Literature ornatus

Gray, 1866

Callithrix ornata n. sp.

Distribution: New Granada.

Description: Fur black and grey, punctuated; forehead and ears white; temple, cheeks, throat, underside of body, and inner side of the legs bright red chestnut; hands and feet grey; tail black, grey-washed; hair of tail pale, with a broad sub terminal ring.

Remark: Received from M. Verreaux as C. discolor of I. Geoffroy; but that species has red-chestnut hands. It is more like C. moloch, and may be a variety of it; but it differs greatly from Geoffroy and Dahlbom’s description.

Gray, J.E. (1866). Notice of some new species of Callithrix in the collection of the British Museum. Annals and Magazine of Natural History (3) 17: 57-58.

Gray, 1870

Callithrix ornatus

Synonyms: Callithrix ornata (Gray, 1866); C. discolor (Verreaux, not Geoffroy).

Distribution: New Granada.

Description: Black-and-grey grizzled; forehead and ears white; temples, cheeks, throat, underside of body, and inner side of legs bright-red chestnut; hands and feet grey; tail blackish, grey-washed; hairs of tail pale, with a broad sub terminal ring.

Gray, J.E. (1870). Catalogue of Monkeys, Lemurs and Fruit-eating Bats in the collection of the British Museum pp. 54-57.

Schlegel, 1876

Callithrix ornata

Synonyms: Callithrix ornata (Gray, 1866, 1870).

Description: The Callithrix ornata resembles in general C. cuprea and caligata; but it distinguishes itself clearly:
1) by the hairs on the ears that are white and not red or black as in the other species,
2) by the four hands, not black or coppery-red, but covered -at least the fingers- by whitish hairs,
3) by the presence of a frontal band of more or less pure grey-white,
4) by the coppery-red that only extends to the internal side of the limbs, of the under-arms and legs.

Remarks: The individuals of this species originate from Colombia, and have been send by Verreaux to the British and Dutch museums under the name C. discolor. However, the figure and description of C. discolor attributes to C. cuprea de Spix, it is clear that the form can be rejected, following the example of Gray, even in the case that Is. Geoffroy has confused the two species, which is very well possible, knowing that the two individuals, obtained by Castelnau near Sarayacu on the margins of the Ucayali differ from the others by their speckled light grey front and the partially whitish hairs on the fingers of one.
The Leiden museum has one specimen, sent from Colombia by Verreaux, with a white frontal band that is strongly speckled with black. Another specimen from St. Fé da Bogota resembles very much the first, but the area between the ears is strongly drawing into dark brown-reddish. Two other specimens, thought to come from Peru, have strongly pronounced white frontal bands.

Schlegel, H. (1876). Les singes, Simia. Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle de Pays-Bas 12 :230-241.

Jentink, 1892

Callithrix ornata

Remarks: the Leiden museum has four individuals:
– an adult male, one of the types of Callithrix discolor, Verraux, from Nouvelle Grenade. Obtained from Verraux;
– an adult, from Santa Fé de Bogota. Obtained from Frank in 1868;
– an adult male from Peru. Obtained from Frank, 1874;
– a young individual, from Peru. Obtained from Frank in 1874.

Jentink, F.A. (1892). Catalogue systématique des mammifères (singes, carnivores, ruminants, pachydermes, sirènes et cétacés). Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle des Pays Bas 11: 51-53.

Forbes, 1896

Callithrix ornata

Synonyms: Callithrix discolor (Verreaux, M.S.); Callithrix ornata (Gray, 1866); Callithrix ornatus (Gray, 1870).

Distribution: U.S. Colombia, vicinity of Bogotá.

Description: General colour black and grey, grizzled; forehead and ears white, instead of black as in C. caligata, or coppery-red as in C. cuprea; temples, cheeks, throat, under side of body, and inner side of legs, bright chestnut; hands and feet grey; tail black, with a grey tinge, the hairs being grey, with a dark ring near the tip of each; hands and feet the colour of the back.

Forbes, H.O. (1896). A Handbook of the Primates pp. 159-165 + plate 14.

Meerwarth, 1897

Callithrix ornata

Distribution: Colombia.

Description: Under and upper side different colours. The under side is vivid coppery or pallid red. Tail with long hairs at the base. Throat and ventral side, sides of the head, inner sides of the limbs, and in some cases also the outer sides an intense coppery. Resembles much cuprea, but the ears, hands and feet are whitish, a white-grey frontal line. The coppery colour only on the external part of the forearms and the upper thighs.

Meerwarth, H. (1897-1898). Simios (macacos) do novo mundo. Boletin do Museo Paraense de Historia Natural y Etn. 2: 121-154.

Trouessart, 1898-1899

Callithrix ornata

Synonym: ornata (Gray, 1866; Schlegel, 1876).

Distribution: Colombia, Bogotá; Peru?

Trouessart, E.L. (1898-1899). Catalogus mammalium tam viventum quam fossilium 1: 44-46.

Trouessart, 1904-1905

Callicebus ornata

Distribution: Colombia; Peru?

Trouessart, E.L. (1904-1905). Catalogus mammalium tam viventum quam fossilium. Quinquennale Suppl. Pp. 25-26.

Elliot, 1913

Callicebus ornatus

Synonyms: Callithrix ornatus (Gray, 1866; Schlegel, 1876); Callithrix ornatus (Gray, 1870)

Type locality: Near Bogota, Colombia (British Museum).

Distribution: Colombia, Peru, South America.

Description: Similar to C. cupreus and C. caligatus, but the top of head is mixed black and coppery red behind the white forehead, and hands and feet yellowish grey. Face black, naked; forehead white, top of head coppery red and black; nape, neck and upper parts mixed grey, black and ochraceous, giving it a grizzled appearance with an ochraceous wash; outer side of limbs grey; sides of head, (where the hairs take the shape of whiskers), inner side of limbs and entire under parts coppery red; hands and feet yellowish grey; tail mixed grey and black. Hairs on ears white.

Skull: intertemporal width, 32; breadth of braincase, 36; palatal length, 18; zygomatic width, 42; median length of nasals, 8.5; length of upper molar series, 15; length of mandible, 42; length of lower molar series, 17; occipital region gone.

Elliot, D.G. (1913). A review of the primates 1: 234-257.

Allen, 1916

Callicebus ornatus

Localities: Villavicencio; Barrigon, 10 miles east of Villavicencio.

Allen, J.A. (1916). List of mammals collected in Colombia by the American Museum of Natural History expeditions, 1910-1915. Bulletin of the AMNH 35: 228.

Cabrera and Ypes, 1940

Callicebus ornatus

Distribution: Colombia.

Description: Resembles C. leucometopa, but darker, with the hands and feet grey and white hairs in the ears.

Cabrera and Ypes (1940). Mamiferos Sud Americanos. Compana Argentina de Editores, Buenos Aires pp. 85-88.

Cabrera, 1958

Callicebus ornatus

Synonyms: Callithrix ornata (Gray, 1866); Callithrix ornatus (Gray, 1870); Callithrix discolor (Martinez, 1873); Callicebus ornatus (Thomas, 1908).

Distribution: The forests of the Cordillera Oriental of Colombia.

Remarks: Although the distribution of the colours may indicate that this Callicebus belongs to C. moloch, for geographical reason we do not include it in this species, as until today none of the forms that  with certainty can refer to this species can be found north of the Amazonas. It is however possible that some intermediate subspecies exists between the river-basins of the Caqueta and Vaupes.

Cabrera, A. (1958). Catálogo de los mamíferos de América del Sur. Instituto Nacional de Investigacion de la Ciencias Naturales, Ciencia Zoologica, 4 (1): 137-142.

Hill, 1955

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Description: A fine specimen of this handsome titi. It is recognised by the broad white frontal band, bordered below by a stiff black supra-orbital fringe and behind by the red-brown vertex. The cheek-fringes are bright coppery red, the throat hairs elongated. There is a white tuft on the concave aspect of each ear. The accompanying diagram illustrates the direction of the short white hairs on the face. General colour of the upper parts grey-brown, speckled from the annulations of the individual hairs; under parts dull orange. Forearms and shanks bright red; hands and feet buffy white. Tail grizzled grey with longer black hairs interspersed among the ordinary annulated hairs (bases of tail white, with succeeding black annulations and grey tips). End of tail slightly bushier and a trifle paler.
There seems no reason to separate this from specifically as it merely replaces cupreus to the north of the range.

Remark: The Scottish Museum has one specimen, 1868/2/20, purchased from Gerrard.

Skull: measurements and description of the individual in publication.


Hill, 1960

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Synonym: Callithrix discolor (Martinez, 1873).

Type locality: Vicinity of Bogota, Colombia. Type in British Museum.

Distribution: Colombia. Recorded from the vicinity of Bogota. Material in British Museum is labelled Medina, Upper Meta river. Allen records it from Villavicencio and from Barrigon, 10 miles farther east.

Description: The most northern representative of the cupreus group. Forehead with row of black superciliary hairs succeeded by broad white transverse band. Crown red brown; sides of head, cheeks, throat and whole under surface of body, also medial surface of limbs, bright chestnut-red; throat hairs elongated; ears with tuft of white hairs on their concave aspect. General colour of upper surface of body grey-brown, due to grizzled effect produced by annulations on individual hairs. Forearms and legs below knee bright chestnut-red; hands and feet buffy white; tail black, washed with grey, the hairs pale grey basally with black terminal zone; end of tail slightly bushier and a trifle paler.

Skull: measurements in publication.


Olivares, 1962

Callicebus ornatus

Locality: the left margin of the Río Guayabera.

Olivares, A. (1962). Aves de la región sur de la Sierra de la Macerena, Meta, Colombia. Revista de la Academia Colombiana de Ciencias Exactas, Físicas y Naturales 11:307-308.

Hershkovitz, 1963

Callicebus moloch ornatus

Synonyms: Callithrix ornata (Gray, 1866); Callicebus ornatus (Elliot, 1913); Callicebus cupreus ornatus (Hill, 1960).

Type locality: New Grenada, here restricted to the Villavicencio region, upper Rio Meta, Meta, Colombia. Type in British Museum.

Distribution: Eastern Colombia from the base of the Cordillera Oriental, eastern Cundinamarca, and the gallery forests of the Villavicencio region, western Meta in the upper Rio Meta basin, southward to the Macarena Mountains and north bank of the Rio Guayabero, a tributary of the Rio Guaviare; altitudinal range from approximately 300 to 600 meters above sea level.

Description: (key to species:) general body colour grey, reddish or brown; under parts like back or sharply defined reddish orange or buff; hind feet black, brown, red or grey, tail grey or blackish with tip grey or grey mixed with black; throat like chest; forearms grey, red, dark brown sometimes blackish above; upper surface of hands grey to blackish never sharply contrasted with colour of upper side of wrists.
Forehead grey sometimes edged with black or dominantly black to blackish brown and always well defined from posterior half of crown and nape, outer side of forearms grizzled or more or less uniformly reddish to dark brown. Forehead with grey band often thinly edged with black; under parts of body orange or reddish and always well defined from sides; forearms uniformly orange or reddish or contrasting grizzled on outer side; tail dominantly grey. Forearms and hind legs dominantly grey above uniformly rufous beneath.

Measurements: see table in publication.

Remarks: The series of titis from the localities listed below are practically indistinguishable from each other. The characteristic whitish frontal blaze is well developed and sharply contrasted with the chestnut red crown. The grey of outer sides of limbs extends from sides of body to knees and elbows in all specimens and half way to ankles and wrists in most specimens; in some the grey continues as a thin line to hands and feet. The fingers and toes are always grey while the upper surface of the hands and feet are usually pale in contrast with the reddish wrists and ankles. This colour pattern of the forelimbs recalls that of its only co generic neighbour, C. torquatus lugens. The tail of ornatus ranges from dominantly buffy or grey to blackish grey.
Intergradation between ornatus and discolor is complete and except for their complete geographic separation, the first might be regarded as little better than a local colour variety of the second.
Callicebus moloch ornatus was first described from New Granada, i.e. Colombia, without further locality data. Subsequently, skins labelled Bogotá or Santa Fé de Bogotá, reached museums through dealers. The old Santa Fé de Bogotá extended from the Rio Magdalena on the west to the Rio Orinoco on the east. Not until 1916, when Allen recorded specimens from Villavicencio and Barrigón in the upper Rio Meta region, did the true habitat of ornatus become known.

Species examined: Colombia – Meta: Rio Guapaya, La Macarena; Los Micos, La Macarena; San Juan de Arama; San Martin; Villavicencio.


De Boer, 1974

Callicebus moloch ornatus

1 individual, unknown origin.
Diploid number 2n = 46. 24 biarmed and 24 acrocentric chromosomes
The arrangement and the structure of the autosome pairs are nearly identical to those of C. moloch cupreus.

The cytological information suggests that the forms cupreus and ornatus on the one hand, and donacophilus on the other, may be more than only subspecifically distinct.

Boer, L.E.M. de (1974). Cytotaxonomy of Platyrrhini. Genen Phaenen 17: 28-37.

Hernandez-Camacho and Cooper, 1976

Callicebus moloch ornatus

Distribution: In the department of Meta, C. m. ornatus occurs in the piedmont to an upper altitudinal limit of about 500m as well in the adjacent lowland gallery forests. It is marginally sympatric with C. torquatus lugens along both banks of the Guayabero River at the southern extreme of its range. Its northernmost occurrence is the lower Upía River, a northern tributary of the Meta River.

Hernandez-Camacho, J. and Cooper, R.W. (1976). The nonhuman primates of Colombia. Neotropical Primates: Field Studies and Conservation. Pp. 47-49.

Robinson, 1979

Callicebus moloch (=ornatus – Callicebus.nl)

Locality: Finca la Macarena and Finca Saravita, near San Juan de Arama, Meta, Colombia.

Robinson, J.G. (1979). Vocal Regulation of Use of Space by Groups of Titi Monkeys Callicebus moloch.  Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 5:1-15.

Hershkovitz, 1987

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Hershkovitz, P. (1987): The titi. Field Museum of natural History Bulletin 58(6): 11-15.

Hershkovitz, 1988

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Member of the moloch group.

Remarks: Complete isolation of the northern titi fraction led to divergence from the southern fraction of ancestral stock. Modern C. c. ornatus, separated from C. c. discolor by a swath no less than 350 km wide, still retains all specific markings including reddish sideburns, under parts, and trend towards pheomelanization of limbs. Affinity with nearest relative discolor is shown by the whitish transverse frontal blaze, marbled tail, and other shared derived features. The crown, however, still dominantly agouti in discolor, is pheomelanized in ornatus. In contrast, outer surface of lower arms and legs, completely pheomelanized in discolor, retain in ornatus most of the common ancestral agouti.
Differentiation of ornatus from discolor has been divergent with respect to some characters, and allometrically clinal in others. Notwithstanding marked changes, morphological separation is not quite complete, and hardly or not in all juveniles, perhaps of recency of genetic isolation. This suggests that reproductive and social isolation between ornatus and discolor is also incomplete. The two forms interbreed in captivity and produce fertile offspring. Their karyotypes are the same. These considerations suggest that ornatus may be best treated as a subspecies within the species Callicebus cupreus.

Hershkovitz, P. (1988) Origin, Speciation, and Distribution of South American Titi Monkeys, Genus Callicebus (Family Cebidae, Platyrrhini), by Philip Hershkovitz . Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 140 (1): 240-272.

Hernandez-Camacho and Defler, 1989

Callicebus moloch ornatus

Distribution: the foothills of the Orinoco and adjacent forests in Cundinamarca (Medina) and Meta, in the northeast till the Rio Upía (and possibly Casanare), till the right bank of the Rio Guayabero (one specimen of the right margin, collected in El Refugio = La Macarena), including the base of the Serranía de la La Macarena.


Hershkovitz, 1990

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Member of the moloch Group.

Synonym: Callithrix ornata (Gray, 1866).

Type locality: “Nouvelle Grenade,” now Colombia, restricted to the Villavicencio region, Rio Meta, Meta, by Hershkovitz (1963). Holotype in the British Museum.

Distribution: Eastern Colombia from extreme south-eastern Cundinamarca (Medina) south, into the department of Meta, along the base of the Cordillera Oriental and the Sierra de Macarena to the Rio Guayabero, upper Rio Guaviare. Hernandez-Camacho and Cooper (1976) give the northern limits of the range as the lower Rio Upia, a tributary of the Rio Meta, in Meta department. Two Medina specimens in the British Museum (Natural History) were subsequently recorded by Napier (1976). At the southern extreme of the range Callicebus cupreus ornatus, according to Hernandez-Camacho and Cooper (1976, p. 56), “is marginally sympatric with C. lugens along both banks of the Guayabero River.” Olivares (1962, p. 307) observed the two species on the left bank of the Guayabero but did not mention them living on the right bank. This bank of the Guayabero is largely savannah bordered by gallery forests.
Callicebus cupreus ornatus and C. torquatus are the only forms of the genus known to occur in the upper Rio Orinoco basin. The geographic gap of approximately 350 km separating C. c. ornatus from its nearest relative, C. c. discolor, is occupied by Callicebus torquatus medemi.

Description: Pale frontal blaze or transverse band present; crown reddish brown to nearly blackish, hair bases buffy or whitish; sideburns, under parts, and inner side of limbs reddish; outer side of thighs and upper arms buffy agouti like sides of body; outer side of legs and lower part of forearms reddish, digits contrastingly pale.

Measurements: See publication.

Comparisons: Distinguished from C. cupreus discolor, C. c. cupreus, and C. dubius by pale or whitish digits contrasting with reddish ankles and wrists; from C. oenanthe by uniformly reddish sideburns, crown dominantly reddish to reddish brown; from C. brunneus and C. caligatus by buffy or whitish frontal transverse blaze; from other forms of Callicebus by one or more of the preceding characters.

Specimens examined: Total 99, all from Colombia.Cundinamarca: Medina; Meta: Agua Clara (Cano); Barbascal; Barrigon; Los Micos; Rio Guapayo, La Macarena; Rio Guayabero; Restrepo; San Martin; Villavicencio.

Hershkovitz, P. (1990). Titis, New World Monkeys of the genus Callicebus: A Preliminary Taxonomic Review. Fieldiana Zoology 55: 1-109.

Defler, 1994

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Localities: South (right) bank of Guayabero river (reported to Klein and Klein, 1976).

Defler, T.R. (1994). Callicebus torquatus is not a white-sand specialist. American Journal of  Primatology 33:149-154.

Kobayashi, 1995

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Based on cranial measurements, the genus can be divided in five groups:

  • the donacophilus group (including modestus, olallae, d. donacophilus and d. pallescens)
  • the cupreus group (including caligatus, c. cupreus, c. discolor and c. ornatus)
  • the moloch group (including brunneus, h. hoffmannsi, h. baptista, moloch and cinerascens)
  • the personatus group (including p. personatus, p. nigrifrons, p. melanochir)
  • the torquatus group (including t. lucifer, t. lugens, t. medemi, t. regulus, t. purinus and t. torquatus).

The group position of C. dubius remains uncertain; C. oenanthe and C. barbarabrownae were not examined.

Kobayashi, S. (1995). A phylogenetic study of Titi Monkeys, Genus Callicebus, based on cranial measurements: 1. Phyletic groups of Callicebus. Primates 36(1): 101-120.

Anonymous, 1992

Callicebus cupreus (=ornatus)

Locality: eastern border of Tinigua National park (2º40’N, 74º10’W), 350m asl., on the right margin of the Duda river, 13km upstream from its conjunction with the Guayavero river, Meta Department, Colombia.


Stevenson and Aldana, 2008

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Distribution: “In comparison with other forest fragments, Carretero-Pinzón (2005) reported relatively high populations of Callicebus cupreus ornatus … in San Martin.

Stevenson, P.R. and Aldana, A.M. (2008). Potential Effects of Ateline Extinction and Forest Fragmentation on Plant Diversity and Composition in the Western Orinoco Basin, Colombia. International Journal of  Primatology 29: 365–377

Groves, 2001

Callicebus ornatus

Synonyms: Callithrix ornatus (Gray, 1866).

Distribution: A small region in the headwaters of the Rio Meta and Rio Guivare, Colombia.

Description: (after Hershkovitz, 1990). Body and limbs buffy agouti; forearms reddish; hands and feet contrastingly buffy or whitish. Forehead with blaze or a simple median tuft. Crown red-brown to nearly black, the hairs with buffy or whitish bases. Sideburns, under parts, and inner surfaces of limbs reddish.


Roosmalen et al., 2002

Callicebus ornatus

Type locality: Villavicencio region, Río Meta, Department of Meta, Colombia. The holotype is a skin and skull purchased from Maison Verraux, Paris, France, and deposited as no. 1859.7.9.4 in the British Museum of Natural History, London, U.K.

Distribution: Eastern Colombia, from the department of Cundinamarca (Medina), north as far as the lower Río Upía/Río Meta, and south into the department of Meta, along the base of the Cordillera Oriental and the Sierra de la Macarena to the Río Guayabero/upper Río Guaviare. This species is the only member of the cupreus and moloch Group occurring north of the Rios Amazonas/Solimões/Napo axis, in the upper Río Orinoco basin and is separated from its nearest other member of the cupreus Group (Callicebus discolor) in the south by at least 350 km.

Description: Ears and frontal tuft, transverse band or blaze whitish, sharply contrasted with reddish brown crown, the hair bases buffy; sideburns, under-parts, and inner side of limbs reddish; outer surface of thighs, upper arms, upper legs and sides of body buff-agouti; outer side of lower legs and lower part of forearms reddish, sharply contrasted with pale to whitish feet or toes only, and hands or digits only, respectively; proximal one-quarter of tail dark red-brown, distal three-quarters white. Distinguished from Callicebus cupreus and C. discolor by white ears, and pale or whitish digits and toes sharply contrasted with reddish wrists and ankles.

van Roosmalen, G.M.; van Roosmalen, T. and  Mittermeier, R.A. (2002). A taxonomic review of the titi monkeys, genus Callicebus Thomas 1903, with the description of two new species, Callicebus bernhardi and Callicebus stephennashi, from Brazilian Amazonia. Neotropical Primates 10(Suppl.): 1-52.

Defler, 2004

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

Distribution: mostly north of the upper Guayabero from the Cordillera Oriental to the Ariari River, but there is an enclave population in the lowlands along the Guayabero River on the south bank, which may extend east of the mouth of the Atrato River down the Guaviare River, but this needs confirmation. The main population extends up the piedmont forest at least to the Upía River. Eastern limits of this subspecies are poorly defined, but except for the Guaviare River, the subspecies probably does not extend beyond the Metica River.

Description: A white band found over the eyes. The white band extends to the point of the ears; the feet and the hands are whitish; also the proximal part of the tail is reddish and the rest is whitish.

Defler, T.R. (2004). Primates of Colombia.

Bueno et al., 2006

Callicebus cupreus ornatus

A new karyotype with 44 chromosomes (2n = 44: 16 Bi, 26 Acro) was found in two animals, living in different zoos in Colombia, and identified as C. cupreus ornatus, an endemic Colombian subspecies, different to all those described to date for this genus.

Description: white band above the eyes, whitish hands and feet.

Bueno, M.L.; Ramírez-Orjuela, C.; Leibovici, M. and Torres, M. (2006). Información cariológica del género Callicebus en Colombia. Revista de la Academia Colombiano Ciencia 30 (114): 109-115. 

Wagner et al., 2009

Callicebus ornatus

Locality: The Vereda San Isidro de Chichimene is located in the Municipality of Acacias in the department of Meta (480 m a.s.l., 73°42’W, 03°55’N). Callicebus ornatus is also found in La Macarena and Tinigua National Parks.

Wagner, M., Castro, F. and Stevenson, P.R. (2009). Habitat Characterization and Population Status of the Dusky Titi (Callicebus ornatus) in Fragmented Forests, Meta, Colombia. Neotropical Primates 16(1): 18-24.

Auricchio, 2010

Callicebus ornatus

Locality: Colombia, (type locality: Villavicencio Rio Meta region) (04°15’N 73°50’W).