THE CHACMA BABOON
The Chacma baboon Papio ursinus, also known as the Cape baboon, is, like all other baboons, from the Old World monkey family. With a body length of up to 115 cm and a weight from 15 to 31 kg, it is among the largest and heaviest baboon species. The Chacma is generally dark brown to grey in color, with a patch of rough hair on the nape of its neck.
Unlike the northern baboon species (the Guinea, Hamadryas and Olive baboons), Chacma males do not have a mane. Perhaps the most distinctive feature of this baboon is its long, downward sloping face. Males can have canine teeth as long as 2 inches (longer than a lion’s canine teeth). Baboons are sexually dimorphic, males being considerably larger than females.
RANGE | Their distribution in southern Africa
The Chacma baboon is found in southern Africa, ranging from South Africa north to Angola, Zambia, and Mozambique. Size and color vary within that range. The Cape Chacma Papio ursinus ursinus from southern South Africa is a large, heavy, dark brown baboon with black feet. Another subspecies, the Gray-footed Chacma Papio ursinus griseipes, is present from northern South Africa to southern Zambia.
It is slightly smaller than the Cape Chacma, lighter in color and build, and has gray feet. The Ruacana Chacma Papio ursinus ruacana is found in Namibia and southern Angola, and generally appears to be a smaller, less darkly colored version of the Cape Chacma.
BEHAVIOUR | A highly social species
Chacmas usually live in social groups composed of multiple adult males, adult females, and their offspring. Occasionally, however, very small groups form that include only a single adult male and several adult females. Chacma troops are characterized by a dominance hierarchy. Female ranking within the troop is inherited through the mother and remains quite fixed, while male ranking is tenuous and changes often.
Chacmas are unusual among baboons in that neither males nor females form strong relationships with members of the same sex. Instead, the strongest social bonds are often between unrelated adult males and females. Infanticide is also common compared to other baboons species, as newly dominant males will often attempt to kill young baboons sired by the previously dominant male.Baboon troops possess a complex group behavior and communicate by means of body attitudes, facial expressions, sounds/calls and touch.(Wikipedia)