Old vs New World Monkey: Difference and Comparison

Monkeys are almost everywhere and present in various countries worldwide. Monkeys are classified into two types: old-world and new-world monkeys.

Old-world monkeys mainly originated from African and Asian regions, while new-world monkeys originated from America. Various factors differentiate these two types of monkeys from one another.

Key Takeaways

  1. Old World monkeys inhabit Africa and Asia, while New World monkeys are found in Central and South America.
  2. Old World monkeys have narrower, downward-facing nostrils, whereas New World monkeys have wider, outward-facing nostrils.
  3. New World monkeys possess prehensile tails for grasping and climbing, a feature absent in Old World monkeys.

Old World Monkey vs New World Monkey

Old World monkeys are found in Africa and Asia, physically, Old World monkeys have narrow, downward-facing nostrils, they have a more complex social structure than the new world monkeys. New world monkeys are found in Central and South America, they have round, sideways-facing nostrils.

Old World Monkey vs New World Monkey

Old-world monkeys majorly belong to one family directly related to apes called Cercopithecidae. These monkeys have narrow raised noses and hard and colored sitting pads.

They live in various habitat that includes rainforest and dry plain. Old-world monkeys carry their babies on their bellies while moving from one place to another.

New World monkeys are flat-nosed and mainly found in America. This type of monkey is comprised of five families.

They have prehensile tails that consequently help them to grasp and hold the object. New World monkeys are found in South America, especially the rainforest of the Amazon. This type of monkey has various subtypes depending on its size.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonOld World MonkeyNew World Monkey
OriginAfrica and AsiaAmerica
Body SizeTheir body size varies from medium to large.Their body size varies from small to medium.
TailThey have a non-grasping tail that does not allow them to hold any object.They have a prehensile tail that helps them to conveniently grasp any object.
EarsThe tympanic membrane of their ear is connected by a bony tube.The tympanic membrane of their ear is connected by a bony ring.
TeethThey have eight premolars.They have twelve premolars.
HandsThey have opposite thumbs with fingernails and toenails.Their thumb aligns in the same plain but they do not have fingernails.
DietTheir diet includes plants, omnivores, small animals, and insects.Their diet includes berries, nuts, and insects.
FamilyOld World monkeys belong to the Cercopithecidae family.They are comprised of five families.

What is Old World Monkey?

They are majorly found in Asia and Africa. This includes monkeys like baboons, guenons, patas, mandrills, colobus monkeys, etc. They vary from medium to large size.

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They have a narrow nose with nostrils. Old World Monkeys have a thumb which is located opposite to the other fingers and help them to hold and grab objects easily.

Even these monkeys fall into two broad types or subdivide into Colobinae and Cercopithecinae families. Monkeys from colobine have a four or three-chambered stomach in which fermentation takes place, consequently enriching the food. Langur and colobus monkeys are an example of the Colobinae subdivision. Cercopithecinae, on the other side, has cheek pouches that facilitate these monkeys to store food. Guenons, baboons are an example of Cercopithecinae.

old world monkey e1687058023145

What is New World Monkey?

New World Monkeys are existed in America and are comprised of five families, including Cebidae, Atelidae, Callitrichidae, Aotidae, and Pitheciidae.

They have a prehensile tail that consequently helps them to hold and grasp objects conveniently.

They have twelve premolar teeth and are found in small to medium sizes. They do not have fingernails and mainly include nuts, insects, and berries in their diet.

They have twelve premolars, and their thumb aligns in the same plain, but they do not have fingernails. A bony ring connects the tympanic membrane of the ear.

new world monkey

Main Differences Between Old World Monkey and New World Monkey

  1. They exist in different parts of the world. The Old World category of monkeys is from Asia and Africa, while New World is found in America.
  2. Old World Monkeys vary from medium to large size. But New World Monkeys are found in small and medium sizes. They do not grow to a large size and are mostly found in rainforest areas.
  3. The tail of Old World and New World Monkeys vary from each other differently. New World Monkeys have a prehensile tail that helps them to easily grasp and hold object in their tail while Old World Monkey does not have a prehensile tail, they have a non-grasping tail, but their thumb is located opposite to the other fingers that eventually help them to hold and grab the objects conveniently.
  4. New World Monkey has additional premolars as compared to the Old World Monkey. They have twelve premolars, while on the contrary, Old World Monkeys have only eight premolars.
  5. Old World Monkey and New World Monkey belong to different families. Old World Monkey belongs to only one family, i.e., Cercopithecidae, but New World Monkey, on the other side, is comprised of five families, namely Cebidae, Atelidae, Callitrichidae, Aotidae, and Pitheciidae.
  6. Old World and New World Monkeys consume different foods that constitute their diet. Old World Monkeys consume plants, omnivores, small animals, and insects. On the contrary, New World Monkeys include berries, nuts, and insects in their food.
Difference Between Old World Monkey and New World Monkey
References
  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/000689937290412X
  2. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01911/full?utm_source=fweb&utm_medium=nblog&utm_campaign=ba-sci-fpsyg-monkey-vocalizations
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Last Updated : 18 June, 2023

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6 thoughts on “Old vs New World Monkey: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The comprehensive description provided along with the explanations about the neck, teeth, and hands of the Old World and New World monkeys is quite illuminating.

    Reply
  2. The fact that there are multiple families within the New World monkey category is quite intriguing. This article provided a thorough analysis of the contrasts.

    Reply
  3. Great information. The comparison table really makes the differences clear. It’s surprising how many contrasts there are between the two types of monkeys.

    Reply
  4. The detailed comparison between the two types of monkeys was really insightful. I didn’t know about many of these differences before.

    Reply
  5. The lack of interaction between the two types of monkeys is an interesting factor in their differentiation. The communication methods are highlighted to be so different between the two, which is fascinating to learn about.

    Reply

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