The Ucayali River
was proven not to be a barrier for the
white-browed titi monkey (Callicebus
discolor) in Peru. It was observed on both sides of the river. Photo
by Jan Vermeer
Primate Conservation Inc.’s mission is to provide support for projects that study and protect the least-known and most endangered primates in their natural habitats. This is our 22nd year of giving small grants and matching funds to help graduate students and conservationists
PCI is especially proud of two of our past grantees: Fanny Conejo, who does research on night monkeys and yellow-tailed woolly monkeys in Peru; and Le Khac Quyet, who studies and protects the Tonkin snub-nosed monkey in northern Vietnam. In consecutive years each has won the prestigious Sabin Prize for Excellence in Primate Conservation. This unrestricted prize of $20,000 is given to habitat-country primatologists who have made a major contribution to the conservation of endangered primates and their country’s natural habitat.
Conejo and Andy Sabin in 2013 and Le Khac Quyet
with Andy in 2015 at the award ceremony held
in New York. Photo
by Noel Rowe
If you haven’t supported PCI yet, you can donate by credit card or PayPal at
www.alltheworldsprimates.org. Members are rewarded with the use of our exclusive website, which has well-referenced information, photos, and video and audio recordings of all the species and subspecies of primates currently known.
The field reports in this PCI
update are from Peru and Vietnam.
Captain Toppin’s titi monkey (Callicebus
toppini), first described
in 1914 and thought to be a synonym, has been validated by this
study as a full species. Photo
by Proyecto Mono Tocón
Julio C. Tello Alvarado and Jan Vermeer, Proyecto Mono Tocón: Distribution and Taxonomy of Titi Monkeys (Callicebus) in the Atalaya Region, Ucayali Region, Peru. Spring 2012, $4,500
There are still many gaps in our knowledge of primate taxonomy and the distribution of primates in Peru and other South-American countries, especially titi monkeys (Callicebus). Most of our knowledge is based on a limited number of museum specimens, and ranges are often estimated by assuming that large rivers are geographical boundaries.
We conducted surveys in the Ucayali Department of central Peru. It is generally believed that the rivers in this region are geographical barriers for the distribution of
several titi monkey species. However, the exact distribution of these species is not clear and is sometimes contradictory.
We encountered three species of titi monkeys. We expected to find the white-browed titi monkey (Callicebus discolor), but it surprised us because we found it on both sides of the Ucayali River, a wide river that is generally considered to be a natural barrier for primates. We then found a species that was described in 1914 but thought to be a synonym of Callicebus cupreus. As a result of this study, Captain Toppin’s titi monkey (Callicebus toppini) has been reinstated as a valid species, with a distribution ranging from southern Peru to eastern Brazil and northern Bolivia. The third species we encountered is brownish with a black face and hands and is probably a species new to science. The report with the official description of the species is now under review, and this titi will hopefully be named in time to be included in the All the World’s Primates book. We also collected information on the distribution of other primate species and new research questions about river barriers.
These basic studies are important for establishing conservation strategies for the primates of Peru. How can we protect primates if we do not know what species exist, and where they live? The results of this study are being used for the new edition of the IUCN Red List, which will be updated in late 2015, and in the publication of A Field Guide to the Primates of Peru.
Julio C. Tello Alvarado (third
from left), Jan Vermeer
(second from right, in back), and the rest of the Proyecto
Tocón team in the Ucayali Region of central Peru.
Photo by Proyecto
PThach Mai Hoang: The Conservation of Francois’ Langur (Trachypithecus francoisi) at Lam Binh Species and Habitat Protected Area, Tuyen Quang Province, Vietnam. Fall 2014, $3,850
Our team has conducted two field surveys in 2014–2015 to update the population status of Francois’ langur and to identify critical habitats in order to inform our conservation actions. We were able to document nine viable groups of Francois’ langurs, totaling 92 individuals, in Lam Binh Species and Habitat Protected Area.
This is probably the largest population of this species left in Vietnam. The main goal of this project is to protect the remaining groups of Francois’ langurs in the region from hunting and habitat degradation.
François’ langurs live and sleep on karst
Photo by Jan Vermeer
The core action of this protection is the forest patrols done by community patrol groups (CPGs). They are the main means to enforce the laws and reduce the hunting. CPG members report threats and violations to local forest rangers and local authorities once a month and may arrest hunters and poachers or confiscate hunting rifles. Our surveys are mapping the home range and the karst cliffs where Francois’ langurs sleep. We will identify patrol transects and locations for the construction of patrol stations. We have started a conservation campaign for schoolchildren and local people to take pride in this unique species, which is fairly common in their area but very rare in Vietnam.
Thach Mai Hoang has a master’s degree from
of Colorado and teaches at the Department of Vertebrate
Zoology, Biology Faculty, Hanoi University of Science.
How to Support PCI
PCI is an all-volunteer, tax-deductible private operating 501(c)(3) foundation. Since our first grant in 1993, we have provided full, partial, or renewal funding to support more than 500 projects in 28 countries with primate habitats. Projects in Asia have received 40% of our funding; Africa, 32%; Madagascar, 22%; and South America, 6%.
If you would like to contribute cash, stock, or real estate to PCI or would like more information on a specific project, please contact me at the address below. To keep our overhead to a minimum, so that as much as possible of the money raised is used to support field conservation projects, this is our annual appeal for your donations. Please do not forget about this, as you will not receive other mail from us, nor will we share your name with others. We appreciate your support and hope you will give generously to help fund these vital primate projects.
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