White-throated capuchin

Cebus capucinus

NZ capuchin
IUCN Conservation Status –
Least Concern
Extinct In The Wild
Class: Mammals
Order: Primates
Family: Cebidae

Head down Monkey Walk to see our family of white-throated capuchins.

Native to Central America and North-western South America, white-throated capuchins ideal habitat is tropical evergreens and dry deciduous forest. They are known to favour areas with high humidity and drained lowlands.

They are opportunistic feeders and maintain omnivorous diet, eating both plants and animals. Typical types of food are fruits, nuts, invertebrates, as well as small vertebrates such as squirrels, tree rats, lizards and birds.   

Interesting facts!

  • The tail of these primates is prehensile, acting as a ‘fifth limb’. They use their tail to grip objects such as tree branches.
  • ​White-throated capuchins are among the most intelligent of New World monkeys. In addition to their ability to fashion tools for foraging, they have been known to use sticks as weapons against snakes.
  • White-faced capuchins use their voices as a way to stay safe from predators. They have a special chirping/barking sound they make to alert other monkeys in the area of a predator.


White-throated capuchins are threatened in the wild due to hunting for the pet trade and for food. They are thought of as pests in some areas, so are also hunted to protect crops. They are also affected by degradation and deforestation of their natural habitat.