The Curious Blue Ball Monkey

April 02, 2016 2 min read 0 Comments

The Curious Blue Ball Monkey | A Map to Anywhere

The Curiously Named Blue Ball Monkey

There is a monkey in Tanzania known simply as the blue ball monkey. It took me quite a while to find that the real name is actual a Mandrill monkey.

I couldn’t tell you which name this individual prefers.

While some of us choose to spend our days in khaki and olive drab, there are those who like a pop of color.

Being cloaked in motley fir can be a bit boring, especially when you want to accentuate your best feature.

The animals around Lake Manyara in Tanzania understand the importance of a well place stripe or spot.

However, one animal in particular seems to know strategically where to place his pop of color to get the most attention.

That animal is the blue ball monkey.

blue ball monkey

But Why Does He Have Blue Balls?

Most of you will instantly associate this misunderstood primate’s color choices with sexual frustration. However, that is not the case, thank you very much.

In fact, blue ball monkeys would probably prefer if we minded our own business and stopped making assumptions.

But that’s not likely to happen.

I did some intense, web-based research to understand the science behind this phenomena and realized that lots of research has been conducted to try to understand what is causing the vibrant, blue color.

It turns out, the color is an indicator of rank. The brighter the blue, the more important the monkey in his social order.

Rather than an indicator of sexual frustration, these bright blue organs are a monkey status symbol!

blue ball monkey

Baby Blues

And, as you might expect, the ladies prefer gentlemen with brighter blues.

Not only that, but bright blue testicles send a clear signal to other male monkeys that this is someone not to be messed with.

In fact, the bigger and brighter the blues, the more ladies will take notice and gentlemen will show a respectful distance.

What this has taught me is that, although our culture may carry a stigma with blue balls, I have learned to understand that in monkey culture, this is not the case.

I feel like this has been a great lesson for me and improved my cultural sensitivity at the same time.

blue ball monkey


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