Silhouette of a white-faced capuchin monkey

Capuchin monkeys

Capuchin monkeys are tree-dwelling New World monkeys that live in central and southern America. These intelligent and clever monkeys use tools such as stones to crack open nuts, shellfish and crabs. Their abillity to be easily trained gave rise to their exploitation as organ grinder monkeys. They were named by explorers after their resemblance to an order of Catholic friars, the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin.

Scientific name: Cebus

Rank: Genus

Common names:


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Map showing the distribution of the Capuchin monkeys taxa

The shading illustrates the diversity of this group - the darker the colour the greater the number of species. Data provided by WWF's Wildfinder.

The Capuchin monkeys can be found in a number of locations including: Amazon Rainforest, South America. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.

Explore this group

Tufted capuchin Tufted capuchin
Tufted capuchins are relatively common in the forests and rainforests of south America. These monkeys use a most unusual method of attracting their mates, they rub urine into their own fur.

BBC News about Capuchin monkeys

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