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Sulawesi crested macaque

Macaca nigra

Sulawesi crested macaques at Paignton Zoo
IUCN Conservation Status –
Least Concern
Extinct In The Wild
Class: Mammals
Order: Primates
Family: Cercopithecidae

The Sulawesi crested macaque troop at Paignton Zoo live in our Monkey Heights exhibit.

Known locally as yaki, this macaque is native to the tropical forests and mangrove swamps of the Tangkoko reserve on the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia.

Most of this species’ diet consists of fruit, but they also consume seeds, leaves, insects and even small birds.

Interesting facts!

  • The macaques signal to one another by using a variety of calls and facial expressions and by raising and lowering the crest on the top of their head.
  • The species is completely covered in fur, apart from their pink heart-shaped bottom!
  • After 6 months of gestation, a female macaque gives birth to a single infant that she cares for over a full year.


These macaques are hunted for bushmeat and face threats due to being perceived as pests in their native range. Forest clearance also further threatens the survival of this Critically Endangered species in the wild.

The Sulawesi crested macaques at Paignton Zoo are important members of the EAZA ex-situ breeding programme (EEP), which has been successful within zoos over the past few years.