What Is a Baby Monkey Called?

David Martyn Hunt/CC-BY 2.0

A baby monkey is called an “infant.” Monkeys and apes are genetically close to humans, so sharing the same names for their young seems appropriate. All animals are given baby names at the time of birth.

Adult monkeys have great paternal instincts when caring for the young. Close attention is given to basic cleansing and grooming needs. The adult monkey watches over the infant during rest and personal development time. During nursing hours, the adult monkey is sensitive and attentive. The adult mother maintains a close bond with the infant and never lets the infant out of sight for too long.

Marmosets and tamarins are usually born in multiples, but the mothers don’t bear the brunt of responsibility for raising the youngsters. Unlike other species, the father takes the lead role with the mother only feeding the infants. The pygmy marmoset is the smallest of the monkey species and weighs around 4 ounces when it is an adult.

When a baby monkey is are born, it participates in the birth process by pulling itself out of its mother’s body. A newborn monkey’s color may be different from its parents’. Adult brown langur monkeys, for example, give birth to orange infants. The color of the infant changes to match the color of its parents 6 months after birth.

Newborn monkeys cling to their mothers when traveling. Some species, such as marmosets and tamarins, are carried on their fathers’ backs. When not in transit, infants spend most of their time playing, which helps them develop physical and social skills.