The black mardik is the second largest tree climber in Yabun forest as well as the second largest mardik. Males can weigh up to nine kilograms and females up to seven. They are black in color with faint spotting and bright yellow markings along the neck. Black mardiks are social and live in large troops of up to 40 members. The whole of the troop is made up of smaller family groups, each governed by a dominant male and female. Dominance is decided through intimidation and is mostly carried through bloodlines and offspring.
The Black Mardik is the most numerous species of mardik in Yabun Forest. Dominant females give birth to two cubs every year. While they make great mothers, the entire troop (males included) collectively looks after the young. This behavior produces a tight network of family bonds among the troop. Mothers and caregivers will carry offspring on their backs until they are old enough to follow on foot – a common mode of transport among mardiks. Black mardik troops tend to exist on lower canopy levels than the red tailed mardik and so the two species have less chance of competing for the same food sources and territories. Red tailed mardiks are known to be highly protective over their territory and so the two species tend to stay wary of each other. Red tailed mardiks have been noted to attack black mardik troops, however, this behavior is rare and will occur only if the groups’ food sources overlap.
While this particular species isn’t the largest of mardiks, it is the loudest. Black mardiks use sound to communicate with each other and their calls can be heard up to 3 km away. They use these calls to mark boundaries between rival groups and also as an alarm system to warn the troop of potential enemies.