Reproductive tactics of males can change with individual quality, relatedness and social structure. Here we describe the behaviours of male grey-cheeked mangabeys towards other males, and females and their offspring (Lophocebus albigena) in relation to male status (high-ranking/low-ranking/transient) and group composition in Kibale National Park, Uganda. High-ranking males had the highest mating success, frequency of loud calls, mate guarding and aggression towards females and males. Only transient males were often observed to be aggressive towards juveniles, while some high-ranking males provided infant care. Mating tactics of high-ranking males varied greatly among the five studied groups, probably as a function of the intensity of male–male competition. These results are discussed with regard to the role of male–male competition and behaviours that could affect female mate choice as tactics to obtain reproductive success.