Etosha National Park, Namibia, Africa

A snow monkey bathing. He is taking a relaxing bath in a hot thermal pool. You see dipping his body under the water with only his head above the surface. Through the cold air, steam rises from the warm water.

copyright Anette Mossbacher, 17 July, 2023

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This photograph was captured with a Canon EOS-1D X and a lens. The following settings were used:

  • Aperture: ƒ/7.1
  • Exposure time: 1/500s
  • ISO: 2000
  • Focal Length: 342mm

The original photograph has the following dimensions: 4280 by 2853 pixels (WxH).

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This snow monkey bathing is staring directly at the camera while he is taking his relaxing bath. A bath is fantastic to release stress, and also for us humans. This snow monkey is just doing that. The warmth of the hot thermal water is indeed inviting. Dipping his body under the water and has only his head above the surface. These snow monkeys do know how to enjoy such warmth of the water. You can see in their faces how superb a bath can be. Surrounded by snow and cold air, the water steams, which creates fog above the pool. Fog is always mysterious. Who knows what the snow monkeys think during a calm bath?

Japanese Monkeys

Japanese Monkeys, Japanese Macaque, are incredibly sociable animals, and it is fascinating to observe them interact with one another. You will often see higher-ranking snow monkeys bathing for more extended periods. Researchers hypothesize that snow monkeys in Jigokudani maintain their body temperature by growing longer and thicker fur during winter.

An interesting study showed that not only do monkeys bathe for warmth but is also a stress reliever. The researchers tracked 12 adult females to test the feces of all 12 animals. The results they found are quite impressive. Undoubtedly monkeys had lower levels of fecal glucocorticoids during weeks they bathed, compared to weeks they did not. The glucocorticoids in the body determine how much stress you have. It turns out that these cheeky monkeys have a permanent free spa retreat!

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1 comment for Snow Monkey Bathing In Hot Thermal Water

  1. Megan

    I’m so in love with this picture! The steam surrounding the snow monkey makes the ambiance seem so calming and peaceful. Wish I could be bathing in a hot thermal pool!

    • Anette Mossbacher

      For sure the thermal water in Japan is somehow calming and healthy. The snow monkeys enjoyed their baths very much. Their facial expression showed it indeed. 😀
      Thank you very much, Megan.
      Cheers Anette

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