This magnificent creature is the dominant male of a large family of baboons living in the mountains of Taif, Saudi Arabia. The baboon population in this farming area has increased steadily over the years, largely due to a plentiful food supply and the weeding out of their natural predators like hyeana and leopard by hunting. Surprisingly the baboons have grown accustomed to living in such close proximity to humans and they are not at all afraid of the carloads of people that stop along the mountain roads to observe and photograph them. Many of the baboons that I saw had monitoring tags attached to their ears to track their movements, habits, and social life.
Differing from their African cousins in the fact that the Arabian female Hamadryas baboons mate with only one male for life, these baboons live in large families consisting of the dominant male, several adult females, and their babies. Indeed I saw many females with their children clinging to them and just one male in the group. Their coloring ranges from a silvery grey to tan to all shades of brown, and it camouflages them well in their natural habitat in the rocky mountains. They are also quite distinctive with their large hairless bright pink padded bottoms. This fellow has been well groomed by his wives and the long fur around his head and shoulders almost appears to have been crimped with a crimping iron. Later when I uploaded the photos on to the computer, I was quite surprised to see the many photos of male baboon private parts I unwittingly got on this trip!
About This Blog, and About Me: Susie of Arabia
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, is KSA's 2nd largest city and is located on its west coast, right on the Red Sea. I moved here in 2007 with my Saudi hubby and teenage son. This journal reflects the things that I see here, life through my eyes, my lens.
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