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About Vervet Monkeys

Vervets are indigenous to South Africa and are fairly common throughout the area. They have highly strict social groups with females being the ultimate leaders. The females have a sisterhood for life and never leave the troop. The males leave the troop around every four years to prevent in-breeding. Although there are many false facts about vervets these are the true ones. They are not carriers of rabies but however can contract the disease with the same chance as any human. However there has never been an actual report of any monkeys with rabies in the wild or urban areas. 

The females have a gestation period of around 6 months and have only one baby a year normally around summer time (Nov-jan). However early and late babies do occur. There are also rare cases of twins being born. In most cases one will not survive but with the full support of the troop some super moms do manage to pull it off. Vervets are highly bonded with their young and have been known to carry their dead young until majority of it has rotted away. They are very loving creatures and even have certain communication noises to show affection. What most people dont know is that not only do the males have blue balls but all monkeys actually have blue skin on their bodies besides face,hands and feet. They even sometimes have pigmentation's of pink. Vervets have extremely similar features and share much of the same genes as us. Vervets groom regularly to stay clean and also as a social activity. Infact vervets are extremely clean and it would be extremely rare to find any fleas or ticks on one due to their standards of cleanliness. they also dont like getting their hands dirty or touching sticky foods. vervets tails are not a fifth limb and cannot be used to carry or swing on branches.. It is instead used for communication and balance. 

Vervets start becoming weaned at 3-6 months and from then are fully independent but still like to sleep by mum at night. When the next baby is born when they are 1 years old they become fully independent but remain a close bond with their mother and often try play and baby sit their new brother or sister. They become adults at four years old. Some females have been known to fall pregnant as early as three years. monkeys life span is around 24 years of age. A few years are added in captivity and in urban areas they normally die before then due to stress.


DEALING WITH THEM



Vervets are more talk than action and very rarely ever bite unless directly threatened and cornered. The best way to keep yourself from aggressive interactions is to watch from afar if a vervet does approach you aggressively, Stand your ground and do not run away as this will lead them to chase you. the best is to pick up something to scare them off with. Your shoe or a stick should do fine. Do not attempt to hit them with something this is unethical and will only provoke them further. 

Having vervets steal out your kitchens? Well this is a common occurrence. Vervets do not mean to steal, No animal in the wild leaves their food laying around so its not natural for any animal to assume un-gaurded food is not theirs to take. Also vervets habitation is extremely declining leaving them with less and less resources such as water and natural foods. Please take into consideration of the area you live in and what they must be going through before you judge them. They are just trying to survive. If you insist on keeping them away the best way is with a hose pipe or water gun. they hate being sprayed with water and are very scared of them. 

Monkeys sleeping at your house ? Well monkeys have one home tree or tree's next to eachother that they sleep in. this does not change. If they are now shaking up at your place it could be cause their tree has been cut down or use to be by your property. Even after the tree has been cut down they may still continue to try find a sleeping place in that spot as thats what is natural to them. 

I want to feed them.. Well if you live in a highly built up area with little trees, Feeding may actually improve their behavior. However we do not suggest you do it by hand as then they associate people with food and your just asking for them to get hurt by encouraging them to trust people. We suggest you place food in your garden as far away from yours and the neighbors house before they arrive. If you can make a platform in a tree off the ground that would be preferred. This keeps it natural and doesnt tame them any further. You can now sit and enjoy watching them feel safe and secure in the trees. We also suggest you leave a bowl of clean water somewhere safe for them to reach. Monkeys do not like approaching people It makes them nervous and feel at risk so your monkeys would be alot happier if you didnt hand feed them and so would your neighbors. If you live next to bush and the monkeys are wild we discourage any feeding at all as this will only tame monkeys that dont need the food. they are wild animals and if they have enough wild food they do not need your help. 

If you have any further questions feel free to contact us.