Skip to main content
sdzglibrarybanner San Diego Zoo Global Library

Patas Monkey (Erythrocebus patas) Fact Sheet: Distribution & Habitat

Distribution

Geographic distribution

  • Tropical Africa (Isbell 2013)
  • Widespread below the Sahara Desert to above the tropical forest belt
  • Nearly span the African continent west to east
    • Western-most population reaching Dakar-Yoff, NW Senegal
    • East to Ethiopia's Lake Tana
  • Isolated populations on the Aïr Massif, Niger and some districts of Kenya and Tanzania (Isbell 2013; Kingdon et al. 2008)

Sub-specific distribution

  • Erythrocebus patas baumstarki- Tanzania, Serengeti and Athi Plains and the west side of Mt. Kilimanjaro (Mittermeier et al. 2013)
    • Not well documented
  • E. p. patas- sub-Saharan Africa from southern Mauritania and Senegal to Chad and Central African Republic (Mittermeier et al. 2013)
    • Isolated populations in Aïr Massif of northern Niger and the Ennedi Massif, Chad
    • Introduced into southwestern Puerto Rico, in the Caribbean - see Introduced Population (Gonzalez-Martinez 1998)
  • E. p. pyrrhonotus - Southern Sudan, north to Nubia; western Ethiopia; northern Democratic Republic of Congo; northern Uganda; Kenya (Mittermeier et al. 2013)
  • E. p. villiersi- Niger, from Aïr and north of the bend of the Niger River (Mittermeier et al. 2013)
    • Uncertain distribution

Habitat

Habit

  • Terrestrial: spends most of time on the ground (Hall 1966; Isbell 2013)
  • Climbs trees on occasion in daylight and to sleep at night (Mittermeier et al. 2013)

Habitat type

  • Open grassland, savanna, and woodland (Isbell 2013)
  • Dominant plant species vary across the range
    • In Cameroon's Kala Maloue National Park: Zornia glochidata and Panicum spp. - grassland habitat (Isbell 2013)
    • In Uganda's Murchison Falls National Park: Acacia sieberiana, Tamarindus indica, and Combretum aculeatum - woodland habitat (Isbell 2013)
    • Kenya and Tanzania - Acacia drepanolobium, Pennisetum mezianum, Pennisetum stramineum, and Themeda triandra - poorly drained, seasonally waterlogged vertisolic soils (Isbell 2013)

Precipitation range

  • c.250-1435 mm (Isbell 2013)
  • Drink water daily; restricted to locations with permanent water sources in drier habitats (Isbell 2013)

Altitude range

  • 0-2050 m (Isbell 2013)
  • Typically at lower elevations (Mittermeier et al. 2013)

Distribution Map

Patas monkey distribution map
Patas monkey distribution. 
Adapted from www.d-maps.com according to IUCN fact sheet.

Page Citations

Hall (1966)

Isbell (2013)

Kingdon et al. (2008)

Mittermeier et al. (2013)

SDZG Library Links