Photos: Adorable and Amazing Guenon Monkey Faces

Colorful guenon monkeys

Cercopithecus wolfi guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

Guenon monkeys are one of the most diverse groups of Old World monkeys. Recently, researchers discovered that their incredibly intricate facial patterns help the sociable monkeys avoid interbreeding with other guenon species.

Erythrocebus patas

Erythrocebus patas guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

There are more than 30 different guenon monkey species, such as the Erythrocebus patas shown here.

Cercopithecus lesula

Cercopithecus lesula guenon monkey

(Image credit: M. Emetshu)

Guenon monkeys forage in large groups, with two to six different species traveling together for added protection.

Cheek pouch monkeys

Miopithecus talapoin guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

Guenons are also called cheek pouch monkeys, as shown by this Miopithecus talapoin. They stuff fruits, leaves and insects in their cheeks.

Cercopithecus mitis

Cercopithecus mitis guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

Each guenon monkey resembles other members of its own group, but is strikingly different from other species.

Chlorocebus tantalus

Chlorocebus tantalus guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

The different facial fur patterns helps guenon monkeys avoid interbreeding.

Cercopithecus diana

Cercopithecus diana guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

When guenon monkeys interbreed, their offspring may be infertile or less healthy, such as when horses and donkeys breed.

Cercopithecus petaurista

Cercopithecus petaurista guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

Each guenon species communicates via unique chirps, calls and whistles.

Cercopithecus ascanius

Cercopithecus ascanius guenon monkey

(Image credit: William Allen)

Guenons live in the forests of Central and West Africa.

Guenon diversity

Guenon monkey faces

(Image credit: William Allen)

An amazing set of guenon faces.

Becky Oskin
Contributing Writer
Becky Oskin covers Earth science, climate change and space, as well as general science topics. Becky was a science reporter at Live Science and The Pasadena Star-News; she has freelanced for New Scientist and the American Institute of Physics. She earned a master's degree in geology from Caltech, a bachelor's degree from Washington State University, and a graduate certificate in science writing from the University of California, Santa Cruz.