Baboon in Swahili: nyani (Papio spp.)
Shoulder height: 50–75 cm; weight 25–45 kg. This powerful terrestrial primate, distinguished from any other monkey by its much larger size, inverted U-shaped tail and distinctive dog-like head, is fascinating to watch from a behavioural perspective. It lives in large troops that boast a complex, rigid social structure characterised by matriarchal lineages and plenty of intertroop movement by males seeking social dominance. Omnivorous and at home in almost any habitat, the baboon is the most widespread primate in Africa, frequently seen in most Tanzania game reserves. There are several species of baboon in Africa, regarded by some authorities to be full races of the same species. Two species are present in Tanzania: the olive or anubis baboon (P. anubis), which is the darker and hairier green-brown baboon found in the west, and the yellow baboon (P. cynocephalus), a more lightly built and paler yellow-brown race whose range lies to the east of the Rift Valley.