Sapajus flavius 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Primates Cebidae

Scientific Name: Sapajus flavius
Species Authority: Schreber, 1774
Common Name(s):
English Blonde Capuchin, Marcgrave's Capuchin Monkey
Cebus flavius (Schreber, 1774)
Taxonomic Source(s): Lynch Alfaro, J.W., Silva, J.S. and Rylands, A.B. 2012. How different are robust and gracile Capuchin Monkeys? An argument for the use of Sapajus and Cebus. American Journal of Primatology 74(4): 273–286.
Taxonomic Notes: Silva Jr (2001, 2002) argued that the tufted capuchins and the untufted capuchins (sensu Hershkovitz 1949, 1955) are so distinct in their morphology that they should be considered separate genera. Cebus Erxleben, 1777 for the untufted group, and Sapajus Kerr, 1792 is the name available for the tufted capuchins.

Cebus queirozi Pontes and Malta, 2006 in Pontes, Malta and Asfora, 2006, is evidently a junior synonym, or, as argued by Oliveira and Langguth (2006), unavailable for lack of a registered type specimen.

The species was transferred to Sapajus (Lynch Alfaro et al. 2012).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered C2a(i) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2008-07-01
Assessor(s): de Oliveira, M.M., Boubli, J.-P. & Kierulff, M.C.M.
Reviewer(s): Mittermeier, R.A. & Rylands, A.B.
This species listed as Critically Endangered due to an extremely small population size and continuing decline. The estimated total population is 180 individuals, all of which are extremely fragmented (approximately 24 subpopulations) and averaging approximately 15 individuals.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2008 Critically Endangered (CR)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The coastal region of north-east Brazil in the states of Alagoas, Paraíba and Pernambuco (Oliveira and Langguth 2006; Pontes et al. 2006). Sapajus libidinosus occurs inland (see Oliveira and Langguth 2006).
Countries occurrence:
Brazil (Alagoas, Paraíba, Pernambuco)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The remaining populations of this species are all extremely fragmented (approximately 24 subpopulations) each averaging approximately 15 total individuals. The estimated total remaining mature populations size is 180 individuals (M. M. de Oliveira, unpubl.).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Lowland coastal rain forest and Montrichiardia linina swamp in north-east Brazil (Pontes et al. 2006), secondary forest, semi-deciduous seasonal forest, canopy at about 20 m and emergents about 25 m. Capuchin monkeys are arboreal quadripeds, they are typically found in the lower to mid-canopy and understory (Freese and Oppenheimer 1981; Fragaszy et al. 2004; Jack 2007).

Capuchin monkeys are frugivores-insectivores, including a wide variety of fruits, seeds and arthropods, frogs, nestlings and even small mammals, supplemented by stems, flowers and leaves. They are extractive, manipulative foragers. Typical group size for tufted capuchins is about 18 individuals, with numbers of females exceeding the numbers of males (adult sex ratio of 0.85). Pontes et al. (2006) recorded a group of 18. Males disperse. Both sexes take up linear hierarchies, the top ranking male being dominant to the top ranking female. Subordinate males are often peripheral (Fragaszy et al. 2004).

Adult male HB 36.8 cm, TL 37.8 cm, weight 3.0 kg (Oliveira and Langguth 2006)
Adult male HB 40.0 cm, TL 41 cm, weight 2.9 kg (Pontes et al. 2006)
Adult female HB 35.1 cm, TL 38.4 cm, weight 1.8 kg (Oliveira and Langguth 2006)
Adult female HB 36.1 cm, TL 38.0 cm, weight 2.5 kg (Oliveira and Langguth 2006).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The major threats are hunting (for food and pets), and habitat loss and fragmentation (mainly through coastal development and sugar cane).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species has not been recorded from any protected areas, though several are within range, including Guaribas Biological Reserve (2,714 ha), Barra do Mamanguape EPA (14,640 ha), Manguezais da Foz do rio Mamanguape (Area of Outstanding Ecological Interest; 5,721 ha), and Engenho Gargau RPPN and Mata Estrela RPPN. Surveys over its entire range are needed to establish habitat preferences, area of occupancy, and population numbers.

It is listed on CITES Appendix II.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Forest -> 1.7. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Mangrove Vegetation Above High Tide Level
suitability: Suitable  
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management
3. Species management -> 3.2. Species recovery
3. Species management -> 3.4. Ex-situ conservation -> 3.4.1. Captive breeding/artificial propagation
4. Education & awareness -> 4.3. Awareness & communications

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
  Included in international legislation:Yes
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:Yes
1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.1. Housing & urban areas
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.3. Tourism & recreation areas
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.3. Agro-industry farming
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

5. Biological resource use -> 5.1. Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals -> 5.1.1. Intentional use (species is the target)
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

5. Biological resource use -> 5.3. Logging & wood harvesting -> 5.3.5. Motivation Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing: Future    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

6. Human intrusions & disturbance -> 6.1. Recreational activities
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.2. Species disturbance

8. Invasive & other problematic species & genes -> 8.1. Invasive non-native/alien species -> 8.1.1. Unspecified species
♦ timing: Future    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.3. Indirect species effects -> 2.3.2. Competition

1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
1. Research -> 1.6. Actions
2. Conservation Planning -> 2.1. Species Action/Recovery Plan
3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends

♦  Food - human
 Local : ✓ 

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 Local : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

Fragaszy, D. M., Visalberghi, E. and Fedigan, L. 2004. The Complete Capuchin: The Biology of the Genus Cebus. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

Freese, C. H. and Oppenheimer, J. R. 1981. The capuchin monkeys, Cebus. In: A. F. Coimbra-Filho and R. A. Mittermeier (eds), The Ecology and Behavior of Neotropical Primates, Vol. 1., pp. 331-390. Academia Brasileira de Ciências, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Hershkovitz, P. 1949. Mammals of northern Colombia. Preliminary report No. 4: Monkeys (Primates) with taxonomic revisions of some forms. Proceedings of the United States National Museum 98: 323–427.

Hershkovitz, P. 1955. Notes on the American monkeys of the genus Cebus. Journal of Mammalogy 36: 449–452.

IUCN. 2015. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.1. Available at: (Accessed: 28 May 2015).

Jack, K. 2007. The cebines: toward an explanation of variable social structure. In: C. J. Campbell, A. Fuentes, K. C. Mackinnon, M. Panger and S. K. Bearder (eds), Primates in Perspective, pp. 107-123. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.

Lynch Alfaro, J.W., Silva, J.S. and Rylands, A.B. 2012. How different are robust and gracile Capuchin Monkeys? An argument for the use of Sapajus and Cebus. American Journal of Primatology 74(4): 273–286.

Oliveira, M. M. de and Langguth, A. 2006. Rediscovery of Marcgrave's capuchin monkey and designation of a neotype for Simia flavia Schreber, 1774 (Primates, Cebidae). Boletim do Museu Nacional Botanica (Rio de Janeiro) 523: 1–16.

Pontes, A. R. M., Malta, A. and Asfora, P. H. 2006. A new species of capuchin monkey, genus Cebus Erxleben (Cebidae, Primates): found at the very brink of extinction in the Pernambuco Endemism Centre. Zootaxa 1200: 1-12.

Silva Jr., J. de S. 2001. Especiação nos macacos-prego e caiararas, gênero Cebus Erxleben, 1777 (Primates, Cebidae). Doctoral Thesis, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro.

Silva Jr., J. de S. 2002. Sistemática dos macacos –prego e caiararas, gênero Cebus Erxleben, 1777 (Primates, Cebidae). Livro de Resumos, X Congresso Brasieliero de Primatologia: Amazônia – A Última Fronteira: 35. Bélém, Brazil.

Citation: de Oliveira, M.M., Boubli, J.-P. & Kierulff, M.C.M. 2015. Sapajus flavius. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T136253A70612549. . Downloaded on 29 November 2015.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided