A wildlife photographer stumbled upon an overwhelmingly touching display when shooting a group of crested black macaques in the Tangkoko Nature Reserve in Indonesia, when he noticed a mother monkey clutching the body of her deceased baby. The heartbreaking scene drew the attention of the photographer -- as well as that of another monkey, who approached the mother to try to help.
"A young male tried to touch the baby but she bared her teeth at him," photographer Andrew Walmsley told the UK's Daily Mirror, describing how the mother was trying to cradle her baby after she lost it. "So he sat next to her gently grooming her as if to comfort her."
The Mirror has some upsetting, but incredibly moving, photos of the grieving mother and the monkey who tried to help her.
The emotional scene only demonstrates how powerful the mother-baby bond is, even among smaller primates. This type of stunning compassion is fairly common among primates -- in one remarkable incident, a male marmoset comforted his mate, who had slipped from a tree and lay dying on the ground. The footage -- heartbreaking though it may be -- is a true testament to the complexity of primate relationships.