Capuchin Monkey Diet & Feeding Guide

The Capuchin Monkey, Cebus capucinus, is a New World monkey that is found mostly in Brazil but also inhabits other parts of Central and South America.

Capuchin monkeys sleep throughout the night and are awake during the day, spending their time foraging for food in the branches of trees and only coming down to the ground when they want water. They will squish themselves in between the branches throughout the night so that they may sleep safely. They do dwell in huge groups, sometimes with as many as forty individuals in one. There is some variation in the color of the capuchin monkey’s fur amongst the different species. The hues of fur vary, but the most common ones are black, brown, and cream. The hue of the face ranges from white to pink. Their body length ranges from 12 to 22 inches, and their tail length is almost exactly the same as their body length. Their body weight ranges from 3 to 9 pounds. Because the tail is prehensile, it is used by the animal to wrap itself around branches as it moves through the trees and jumps between them. A capuchin monkey can leap up to 3 meters (9 feet) in the air!

Capuchins in the wild are omnivorous, eating fruits, nuts and seeds, berries, insects, lizards, rodents, and small birds.

Capuchins should eat the following foods:

  • 2 to 5% Hi-Protein Treats (Insects, Eggs, Etc)
  • 5% to 10% foraging foods (Seeds, Nuts, Grains)
  • 15-20% Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
  • 75% to 80% Commercial Biscuit (Hi-Protein)

A diversified diet is essential for avoiding boredom and lack of appetite.

Every day, at all times, fresh water.

Give your capuchins a commercial primate food that includes:

  • Mango, apple, and banana are examples of fresh fruits.
  • vegetables such as carrots, cauliflower, maize, green beans, and turnip sweet potato nuts and seeds (like sunflower seeds)
  • bread made from wheat
  • eggs that have been hardboiled
  • mealworms, crickets, and grasshoppers in yogurt
  • dietary supplements

A Detailed feeding schedule:

This is an example of capuchin monkey feeding (2-3 lb). Increase amounts according to body weight gain, but don’t overeat. If given too much food, monkeys will squander a lot of it and may overeat, resulting in bloating.

  • Fruits and vegetables should be sliced into little pieces to accommodate the monkey’s small hands.
  • Marmoset jelly or fruit juice may be soaked in New World Monkey Chow.
  • Vionate, a vitamin-mineral powder, may be sprinkled over moist meals. (1/4 teaspoon per animal each day)
  • Food should be available at certain times of the day.

Every day at A.M.

  • 1 to 3 ounces canned primate diet (cut in small pieces) Science Diet, Zupreem
  • 10-12 pieces of soaked New World Monkey Biscuit (Mazuri, Spectrum, Purina, etc.)
  • 1/3 cup dry up depending on monkey size. Soaking in fruit juice may improve palatability during the transition from a bad diet.


Mo-We-Fr:1/8 apple
2 slices of banana 1/2’d
2 grapes 1/2’d
1 TBS diced orange
1/2 slice sweet potato (chopped)
1 1/2 TBS lettuce mix* (Romaine, cabbage, & celery)
4 primate biscuits (soaked in orange juice/jelly)
8 peanuts
1 TBS sunflower seeds
1″ piece of carrot – chopped
1/8 slice of whole wheat bread cubed
4 snow peas
(*) Lettuce mix ingredients are placed in a chopper and mixed. Use long and thin pieces.
Tu-Th-Sa-Su:2 slices of banana 1/2’d
1 TBS diced orange
4 green beans cut
1/4 hard-boiled egg with shell (cut up)
1 TBS corn (thawed frozen or fresh)
5 peanuts
1 TBS sunflower seeds
1 heaping TBS avocado
few sprigs of parsley
1 heaping TBS black-eyed peas (shelled)
1/2 slice turnip
1 oz canned primate diet (cut into small pieces)
4 primate biscuits (soaked in fruit juice or M.jelly)
1/4 slice whole wheat bread cubed

Treats on occasion:

  • Mealworm or cricket? (dusted in vionate).
  • Fish, chicken, turkey, or meat that has been cooked (teaspoon-sized portions)
  • Raisins and other varieties of fruit that have been soaked The daily treat portion should be less than 1 teaspoon in volume!

***Important Tips: Avoid foods that have been fortified with iron, such as fortified cereals.

When it comes to feeding your monkey, it is essential to ensure that they get the ideal quantity of food, ensuring that they do not receive either too little or too much.

According to the findings of the National Primate Research Center at the University of Wisconsin, monkeys would throw away food if they are provided with an excessive amount. In addition to fruits and vegetables that have been chopped into bits that are manageable for capuchin hands, it is recommended that commercial canned and dry meals developed for monkeys be fed to them.

For instance, you may decide to offer your pet a few peanuts, an eighth of an apple, or two little slices of banana many times each week. As a treat, you are welcome to offer your monkey prepared meats, but you should limit yourself to no more than one teaspoon. It is important to refrain from giving monkeys any candy, dairy products, or other types of sweets.

Avoid giving your pet any foods that contain iron, such as some cereals intended for human consumption. Life Expectancy Even while capuchins in the wild only survive 15 to 25 years, those kept as pets may live to be 45 or more. That implies that a young monkey may outlast you or your ability to care for it if you get it as a pet when you’re an older adult, depending on how old you are when you get it.

You should make preparations for someone else to take care of your monkey in the event that you pass away before your capuchin. When writing your will and making other provisions for your estate, you should probably discuss the matter with a lawyer.

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