• sexual behavior;
  • copulation;
  • spider monkey;
  • Ateles geoffroyi


I report ad libitum data on 18 copulations involving free-ranging black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) on Barro Colorado Island, Panama. All copulations were performed in a dorsoventral position, as is typically reported for this genus. Intromission often appeared difficult to achieve, possibly as a result of the large size of the glans penis in these animals. The average length from intromission to termination of thrusting exceeded 17 min, followed by an average period of almost 2 min before separation occurred, which suggests the possibility of a copulatory lock. Offspring of the female participant were almost always in close proximity to or in contact with the pair, and harassment by the offspring was observed only during the final stages of the copulation. All but one copulatory event occurred in complete seclusion from other adult males, and sexual behavior was not limited to any one adult male in the group. Am. J. Primatol. 68:1–5, 2006. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.