Hanuman or Grey Langur

Local name: Langur (Urdu)

Description and Biology:

APPEARANCE: The Hanuman Langur’s coloration varies across subspecies, from gray to dark brown to golden, with varying amounts of black. The locomotion is quadrupedal.SIZE: Langurs weigh 18.3kg (males), 11.2kg (females), and the body length is 406-680mm for females and 510-780mm for males.

REPRODUCTION: The monkeys reach sexual maturity at 46.5-47 months and the gestation period is 168-200 days.

SOCIAL SYSTEM: Langurs have variable socail structure. 1-male-multifemale, multimale-mutifemale. Larger groups may break into subgroups in some seasons. The male defends his mates: females defend their resources. Average group size is 11-64 individuals.

The Langurs are diurnal, terrestial and arboreal. Hanuman Langurs are the most terrestial of any colobine. They spend up to 80% of the day on the ground, and almost all feeding is within 5 meters of the ground. In 1-male groups the alpha male’s tenure is usually less than 2 years. When a new male takes over a troop, he systematically kills infants sired by the previous alpha male. This reproductive strategy was first documented in this species. Juvenile males leave when a new male takes over. Allomothering is also documented in this monkey .

DIET: The Hanuman Langur eats mature leaves, fruit, buds, flowers, young leaves, animal prey, exudates, bark, soil, herbs. The Himalayan subspecies rely on pinecones, bark and twigs during snowy winter months These langurs will raid gardens and crops ( all above information from “The Pictorial Guide to The Living Primates,” Pagonias Press, Newyork).

Habitat and Distribution:

The Hanuman Langur prefers tropical, subtropical, pine, alpine forests and urban areas. This animal is very adaptable species and is distributed in dry savannah country and tropical rain forests in different parts of the sub-continent. In Pakistan, however, it is confined to Azad Kashmir and Siran Valleys of Mansehra and Kohistan districtsThis monkey is very rare in Pakistan. It has only been sighted in Azad Kashmir and in Khagan, In Sharan forest reserve and in Shogaran. It is not found in Murree or Swat hills. Excluding Azad Kashmir, the total population is less than 200 (T.J Roberts, “Mammals of Pakistan”). However, a survey by N.W.F.P Wildlife Department in 1997 found that the numbers were much higher than 200 as reported by Roberts (see below).

Recent Sightings and Population Surveys:


N.W.F.P Wildlife Department 1997 survey of Wildlife. Results for Hanuman or Grey Langur  in the Province

District Place No of animals recorded
Mansehara Shogran-Malkandi 220 Manshi wilidlife sanctuary 220 Nagan-Nadi-Musala 118 Kalam Ban- Kaghan 16 Bhunja Kalah 80 Beari-Chor 189 Kohistan Pallas 160 Bankad Dubair 70 Pattan/Keyal 210
 Total: 1283 

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