The mitred leaf monkey is active throughout the day and early evening and (4), although it is a primarily arboreal species, little time is spent climbing and swinging through trees due to the species’ primitive thumb. Instead, the mitred leaf monkey moves largely by leaping and walking or running on all fours (5).
Despite its name, leaves comprise only one-third of the mitred leaf monkey’s diet; the remainder is made up of seeds, fruit, flowers and roots (2) (5); it has even been known to dig up and eat cultivated sweet potatoes (2). A total of 55 different plant species are eaten by the mitred leaf monkey (5), taken from within a daily foraging range of 500 to 800 metres (3). It obtains water through its diet, as well as by drinking dew and rainwater found in tree hollows (2).
Female mitred leaf monkeys reach sexual maturity at around four years of age, and males become sexually mature at between four and five years (2). While there is not a specific breeding season, there is a peak in the number of births coinciding with the greatest seasonal abundance of food (2) (7). The female mitred leaf monkey gives birth to a single offspring or, rarely, twins (2). Infants gain independence from the parent at an early age, with juvenile males dispersing from their natal group at between five and ten months of age (3).
The mitred leaf monkey lives in groups of 12 to 18 individuals, consisting of either one male and multiple females, or multiple males and multiple females (5). All-male groups and lone males may attempt to take over troops by splitting off females (3).