Papio can be divided into five species, as outlined by Groves (2001). Papio hamadryas (hamadryas baboons), P. anubis (anubis baboons), P. cynocephalus (yellow baboons), P. ursinus (chacma baboons), and P. papio (Guinea baboons). Some authorities continue to recognize only a single species, Papio hamadryas, which is composed of five subspecies corresponding to the species mentioned above. Species are parapatric, with hybridization often occurring in areas where populations abut. In overall physical appearance, all members of the genus are similar, with variation in coat color (olive, brown, black, yellow, red, gray), and hair length. A mane or ruff of fur may be prominent in males, and varies by species. Size varies by species and geographically, with males weighing from 20 to 31 kg, and females weighing from 10 to 15 kg. Baboons may live in large or small multi-male, multi-female troops, or single male harems. In all species, social behavior is complex and varied. Baboons can be found in a variety of habitat types, including grasslands, woodlands, semi-arid and arid savannas, steppes, alpine woodlands, sub-deserts, gallery forests, and rainforests. This genus is primarily frugivorous, although grasses, leaves, seeds and other plant material are consumed. Animal matter is eaten when available.
- Groves, C. 2000. The Phylogeny of the Cercopithecoidea. Pp. 77-100 in P Whitehead, C Jolly, eds. Old World Monkeys. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
- Groves, C. 2001. Primate Taxonomy. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Insitution Press.
- Kummer, H. 1968. Social Organisation of Hamdryas Baboons. A Field Study. Basel and Chicago: Karger, and University Press.
- Nowak, R. 1999. Walker's Mammals of the World, Sixth Edition. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
- Oates, J. 1986. Food distribution and foraging behavior. Pp. 197-209 in B Smuts, D Cheney, R Seyfarth, R Wrangham, T Struhsaker, eds. Primate Societies. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
- Primate Info Net, 2000a. "Primate Info Net" (On-line). Yellow Baboon (Papio cynocephalus). Accessed July 14, 2003 at http://www.primate.wisc.edu/pin/factsheets/ papio_cynocephalus.html.
- Primate Info Net, 2000b. "Primate Info Net" (On-line). Olive Baboon (Papio anubis). Accessed August 11, 2003 at http://www.primate.wisc.edu/pin/factsheets/papio_anubis.html.
- Primate Info Net, 2002a. "Primate Info Net" (On-line). Chacma Baboon (Papio ursinus). Accessed July 14, 2003 at http://www.primate.wisc.edu/pin/factsheets/papio_ursinus.html.
- Primate Info Net, 2002b. "Primate Info Net" (On-line). Guinea Baboon (Papio papio). Accessed July 14, 2003 at http://www.primate.wisc.edu/pin/factsheets/papio_paio.
- Primate Info Net, 2002c. "Primate Info Net" (On-line). Hamadryas Baboon (Papio hamadryas). Accessed July 14, 2003 at http://www.primate.wisc.edu/pin/factsheets/papio_hamadryas.html.