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Patas Monkey (Erythrocebus patas) Fact Sheet: Managed Care

Life in Managed Care


  • Oldest recorded ages
    • c. 34 yrs (age estimated), oldest female; currently alive as of 1 January 2014 (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • 24 yrs, managed care-born male; currently alive as of 1 January 2014 (Whittaker et al. 2014)
  • Median age: 15 yrs


  • Earliest age at first birth: 1 year (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • c. 3-4 yrs typically (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • Interbirth interval similar to that of wild patas (Nakagawa et al. 2003; Whittaker et al. 2014)
  • Oldest proven reproductive age >20 yrs (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • 21 yrs, a male (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • 23 yrs, a female (Whittaker et al. 2014)

Captive History

North America

  • Historical notes
    • 1876, first recorded year of patas held in managed care (Strange 2011)
      • Based on handwritten records from the Philadelphia Zoo (Strange 2011)
    • 1948, first recorded birth (Strange 2011)
    • 1876-1950s, few individuals held (Whittaker et al. 2014)
      • <10 animals across all Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) institutions (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • 1960-1980, large increase in population size
      • Peak of nearly 200 animals in 1979 (Whittaker et al. 2014)
  • 3 of 4 subspecies housed, based on historical data (Strange 2011)
    • Most common: western patas (Erythrocebus patas patas) (Strange 2011)
    • Eastern patas (E. p. pyrrhonotus) not as common, though present throughout historical record (Strange 2011)
    • 1 record of a single southern patas (E. p. baumstarki), though there is no verifiable description or photo of the animal (Strange 2011)
  • Current population size
    • 42 are in 10 AZA institutions, as of 1 January 2014 (Whittaker et al. 2014)
      • 13 males; 28 females; 1 unknown sex (Whittaker et al. 2014)
    • Mix of zoo-born and wild-caught individuals (Whittaker et al. 2014)
      • Most wild-caught from the non-native, introduced colony in Puerto Rico (Whittaker et al. 2014)

San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance (SDZG)

  • 1957, first patas; a female; joined by a male the following year (Strange 2011)
  • Most recently housed in the early 1990s

Patas Monkey at San Francisco Zoo

Patas monkey family, Huston Zoo

Patas monkey at the San Francisco Zoo.

Image credit: © Mike Fisher from Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Page Citations

Nakagawa et al. (2003)

Strange (2011)

Whittaker et al. (2014)

SDZWA Library Links