Gelada - African Mountain Baboon
The gelada, which stands between 20-30 inches (50-75 cm) and weighs 24 and 41 lbs (11 and 18.5 kg), is a baboon known for it's distinctive head. It has an upturned muzzle marked with ridges, with nostrils that are located towards the back (unlike most other baboons, whose nostrils are located at the tip of the muzzle), but that's not the most distinctive part. Geladas also have long side whiskers that project backward and upward, and a think mane that covers their neck and shoulders, which has been known to get so long on older males that it touches the ground. On the gelada's chest, is what basically amounts to a set of warning lights. There's three areas of bare red skin, which the males will expand and bring into full view when they feel threatened and are considering attack.
The gelada likes to spend it's time on the ground in the alpine meadows and rocky ravines of the mountains of Ethiopia, and will sleep on rocky ledges and cliffs. While roaming the ground, they will feed on plants, grasses, seeds, fruits, insects, and other small animals. Unlike other baboons that live in large, mixed groups and hordes, the gelada has a smaller family structure of several females and their young, led by a large mature male. These smaller groups then organize into the larger troop, making a sort of family community that may number in the hundreds. Young males without families may also form their own units on occasion. The troops do not have specific territories, and the small families are kept together by their lead male's calls and facial expressions. Furthermore, their ability to vocalize is very impressive, as they have calls to represent contact, reassurance, appeasement, solicitation, ambivalence, aggression and defense. Geladas also are known for having tremendous vision, hearing, and sense of smell, which they use to find food and protect themselves from predators. The gelada is a very diverse creature with characteristics and a strong social structure that helps to ensure that the species flourishes.