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For protection against predators, gelada baboons sleep balanced on steep rocky cliffs!

Gelada Baboon

Theropithecus gelada

Although referred to as baboons, geladas are not closely related to other baboon species. They can be easily recognised by the hairless patches of skin on their chests. Adult males are larger than females and possess manes.



Head body length: Male 69 – 74cm, female 50 – 65cm
Weight: Male 20kg, female 12 – 16kg



Gelada baboons are found in the high grasslands and rocky gorges of the central Ethiopian highlands in northeast Africa. Unlike many monkey species, gelada baboons are mainly terrestrial - spending up to 99% of their time on the ground.



Geladas are grazers, feeding mainly on a variety of grasses. They are the only primate to have a mostly grass (graminivorous) diet!



Geladas live in groups of a single male and a number of females, although bachelor groups are common. A single young is born after a pregnancy of between 5 and 6 months.



The gelada baboon is not classed as endangered, although its numbers are decreasing due to the spread of agriculture in their habitat. They are also persecuted as crop pests in some areas.

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