What do monkeys eat?

In this short article, we will answer the question “What do monkeys eat?” by showing you which types of monkeys eat in the different food categories.

What do monkeys eat?

Monkeys eat both plants and animals meals, just like humans. Primates eat more plants than animals regularly. Almost all apes eat fruits, nuts, foliage, bugs, and occasionally non-dairy foods like birds or lizards, except for primates who solely eat leaves.

Monkeys can process meat and can consume sweet fruits in conjunction with leaves, albeit they do so infrequently. Chimpanzees do, of course, occasionally eat meat, but it only tries to make up a very minor portion of their diet.


For monkeys, eating takes up the vast majority of the day, yet feeding is normally done alone. Within a few hours, they get pickier and begin to select the ripe fruits or leaves that contain the most water. In the morning, they start eating almost everything close.

On average, they eat every 6 to 8 hours. For instance, the diets of the two species of chimpanzees are comparable. Ordinary chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) consume more meat than bonobos do, though.

Animal origin meals 

Monkeys need a little bit more protein even though they get a lot of it from their vegetables. Formerly believed to be herbivores, it is now known that less than 2% of this animal’s diet is composed of meat.

Compared to females, who primarily rely on invertebrates for nourishment, males consume more meat. They occasionally come to hunt. However, some monkeys are frequently observed bringing a stick or twig inside the termite nest and utilising it to catch termites.

For instance, the chimpanzee removes the instrument after the bugs have climbed up on it and eaten the newly acquired meal. Caterpillars may also infrequently be consumed by them.

Although they are not very adept hunters, some monkeys, such as the blue bogeyman (Philantomba monticola) as well as other monkeys, may hunt small vertebrates, primarily antelope. In addition, they occasionally eat wild boar, eggs and birds.

For instance, chimpanzees hunt the western red colobus, red-tailed monkey, and yellow baboon. Their diet contains less than 2% meat on average. Hunting is a shared activity.


A chimpanzee can navigate the forest and grab a baby monkey on its own, but if it needs help, everyone in the group has a job to search for. 

While some predators chase after their prey, others block their way, hide, and ambush it.

When the animal is dead, they share the flesh among some of the group. Although bonobos don’t hunt much, if given the chance they can capture duikers, squirrels, flying and termites.

Both captive bonobos and ordinary chimpanzees in the jungle experienced cannibalism in the old days. Although they don’t frequently occur, they can. Pan troglodytes have been known to kill and consume members of other communities.



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