How do monkeys eat bananas?

In this brief article, we will answer the question, “How do monkeys eat bananas? and provide information on whether monkeys consume banana peels, whether apes have bananas, why monkeys should not eat bananas as well as the traditional diet of a monkey.

How do monkeys eat bananas?

Monkeys eat bananas by peeling them. Bananas are usually peeled from the bottom. Monkeys would bite onto the banana’s front side. This can be used to peel open a banana.

Some monkeys would bite or make a tear in the middle of a banana. Bananas would then be slowly peeled from the middle portion. Every monkey has a different way of eating bananas. 

Some monkeys break open stems of bananas to separate bananas from trees. Post this, bananas are then peeled.

Do monkeys consume banana peel?

Usually, monkeys eat bananas without peeling. Some monkeys do not like to consume banana peel. So, it would bite using its teeth onto the side of a banana. It then opens the banana peel from that bitten area.

If monkeys are very hungry, they eat bananas along with peels. Sometimes, if there is food scarcity, this can be observed too.

Do apes eat bananas?

Yes, apes eat bananas too. Some apes break bananas into two before peeling and consuming them. Apes like orangutans can use their teeth to open a banana and then eat it along with its skin.

Chimpanzees also use their mouth to open banana peel and eat it. Gorillas eat bananas in varied ways. 

Some gorillas like to break bananas in half and squeeze the peel so that an entire banana lands up in their mouth. Other gorillas would eat bananas with skin.

Why should monkeys not eat excess bananas?

Bananas contain high levels of sugar making them irresistible to monkeys. It comparatively has a lower fiber value. This can increase the risk of weight gain in monkeys. 

Diabetes and tooth decay are other problems associated with excess consumption. As a result, do not feed monkeys with bananas. Monkeys would prefer grapes over bananas. 

Besides, bananas are not usually included in a monkey’s diet. Monkeys do not encounter bananas in the wild. This makes it a less healthy option for monkeys.

A monkey’s stomach is not equipped to deal with very sugary foods either. A monkey is used to eating high-fiber foods which do not suddenly peak sugar levels. 

However, feeding them a banana can spike up sugar levels which can increase the risk of developing diabetes with excess consumption. Excess sugary food consumption has also been known to make monkeys very aggressive or hyperactive. 

What do monkeys traditionally eat?

Monkeys eat nuts, seeds, and eggs. They eat fruits too but the sugar content of fruits in the wild is lesser. Monkeys are generally omnivores though some monkeys would solely eat insects while others solely feast on fruits.

Tarsier is the only species of monkey that are carnivorous. Cannibalism is pretty rare in monkeys though some pregnant monkeys are known to indulge in them to obtain nutrition.

Apart from insects, monkeys can eat bats, squirrels, lizards, and birds. Smaller invertebrates can be eaten too. 

Monkeys living in urban cities scour around garbage cans and are even known to steal food from people. They can eat fruits from trees too. 

Monkeys can consume nuts with hard shells too. They can try to break open shells by biting on them or banging them against a hard rock.

What to feed to pet monkeys?

A balanced diet should be given to your pet monkey. You can give steamed veggies or fruits to monkeys. Apart from this, monkey biscuits and commercially prepared monkey foods are available too.

Do not give excessive sugary foods to monkeys. This can increase the risk of monkeys developing diseases like diabetes or make them aggressive. Some of the sugary foods that can be avoided are ice cream, fast foods, extremely sweet fruits, or sweet desserts.

Fruits should be given in moderation as they contain sugar too. You can give apples, bananas, blueberries, and grapes in limited amounts. Veggies like cucumber, fennels, cauliflower, tomato, and onions can be given. Wash fruits and veggies before serving.

Monkeys that are kept captive would need to be given vitamins too (specifically vitamin D) as there is reduced sun exposure. Do not give raw meat to monkeys.

You can also give small insects like grasshoppers to monkeys. Cooked chicken, rice, yogurt, grains, mealworms, and hard boiled eggs can be fed to a monkey.


In this brief article, we have answered the question, “How do monkeys eat bananas? and provided information on whether monkeys consume banana peels, whether apes have bananas, why monkeys should not eat bananas as well as the traditional diet of a monkey.


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