I’ll grow up my way…

If there’s any good advise experienced parents can give newly expecting ones, it is that none of the thousands of parenting guide-books on the bookstore shelves will apply to your child 100%. You have to find what works for you, and go with it – your kid will turn out just fine.

The same seems true in the animal kingdom.

This afternoon while having lunch at Mpila in the Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park, we noticed this mother Vervet Monkey and her baby coming past in a most unconventional manner. Normally the newly born babies would hang below the moms tummy, within easy reaching distance of her mammary glands. This little one however clung to the fur on his mom’s behind with all his might, and it obviously hurts her to quite some degree, as she regularly took him off and gave him a harsh hiding, to which he then responded with a terrible tantrum, screaming to high heaven until she relents and he gets back onto her buttocks. It was such a funny sight, and if she was human I would have given her a knowing wink of the eye in sympathy.

Just in case you were wondering, this is the more usual way female Vervet Monkeys carry their babies; an example from another mom in the same troop that walked past our accommodation unit.



16 thoughts on “I’ll grow up my way…

  1. darwinprimategroup

    Having nurtured many vervet orphaned babies, the lesson I learned is it takes an enormous amount of patience, tolerance and love to accept a tiny, clinging infant 24/7 on your body. The tantrums kept me on my toes, just in case I forgot my role as mother. I got off lightly having monkey infants pulling on my clothes as opposed to monkey hair! I love these photos. Thank you for sharing!


    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      I also wondered whether there’s some kind of “illness” causing the behaviour, as he positively hated being anywhere else on his mom. But when he was playing with the others he was just as boisterous as any other baby Vervet.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. petrujviljoen

    Die trop bobbejane hier het ‘n hele klomp nuwe babas. Sien een sit penorent op sy ma se rug, reg by die stert kompleet asof daar ‘n saal op was. Leun so ewe teen die stert. Andersins die gewone manier – baba onder die maag. Ek dink ‘n baba bobbejaan is een van die lelikste wat mens kan kry maar mens sal nie die ma of pa kan oortuig daarvan nie.

    Trop ape ook ‘n nuwe klomp kleintjies.



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