top of page


Colobus angolensis | Angolan Black-&-white Colobus


Good Spot: Ngungwe National Park, Rwanda

Seeing this Species


Before you meet the Banded Leaf Monkeys, you'll probably hear a machine gun. No need to panic. These are just the monkeys' territorial calls. As with most diurnal primates, they are most active early in the morning and during the mid-afternoon. They are almost entirely arboreal so you'll need to look up. During the months of January-Febuary and June-July, you have a good chance of seeing infants [1]. 


Once widespread, the monkeys are now restricted to a small area within the Central Catchment Nature Reserve*. Good news is, you can (somewhat) predict where the 40 individuals are [2]. 


Upper Seletar Reservoir Park -- This (free) scenic park can be reached by the same bus that brings you to the Singapore Zoo (SBS loop service 138, take from the Ang Mo Kio terminal). Before it reaches the zoo, alight at the "Upper Seletar Reservoir" bus stop along Mandai Road. From the park signboard, stroll in the 1.5km Mandai Road Track 7 trail. There is a higher chance of seeing the leaf monkeys past the golf course and carparks.  


Old Upper Thomson Road -- From Upper Seletar Reservoir Park (above), take the same loop bus 138 from the opposite side of road and alight at "After SLE (Seletar Expressway)" bus stop. Cross the roads and the entrance to Old Upper Thomson Road is within sight. Smooth and winding, this 8km road was part of a former Grand Prix race circuit from 1960s to 1970s. After 1.5km on the road, a right turn at the signboard continues into the Upper Peirce Reservoir Park. There's no way to exit except to backtrack to the Park entrance (5km in total); from there, a right turn will lead you to the remaining 1.5km of Old Upper Thomson Road. Look out for the monkeys on both forested sides of the road. 






Sclater’s Angola Colobus (C. a. angolensis) -- Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo


See Colobus angolensis ssp. cordieri

See Colobus angolensis ssp. cottoni

See Colobus angolensis ssp. palliatus

See Colobus angolensis ssp. prigoginei

See Colobus angolensis ssp. ruwenzorii



IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern





Angor Wat, Cambodia

Lopburi, Thailand


[1] Ang A., Ismail M. and Meier R., 2010. Reproduction and infant pelage coloration of the banded leaf monkey (Mammalia: Primates: Cercopithecidae) in Singapore. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 58: 411-415.

[2] Ang A., Srivasthan A., Md.-Zain B., Ismail M. and Meier R., 2012. Low genetic variability in the recovering urban banded leaf monkey population of Singapore. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 60: 589-594.




Page Last Updated: 22 February 2014


bottom of page