Can Monkeys Swim?

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Wild monkeys can swim but try to avoid it, though some species are more inclined to the water than others. Japanese snow monkeys, for example, are known to enter the local hot springs by diving into them. Monkeys use a dog-paddle motion when they swim.

Monkeys are either ground dwelling or arboreal. Tree-dwelling monkeys use their habitat for survival and fear the water because of the predators – alligators, snakes and piranhas – that dwell in it. Ground-dwelling monkeys only enter the water to avoid predation. Monkeys in captivity have been known to drown in the moats that keep them enclosed.