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Primatology & Ecology Field School in Kenya (August 1 to August 28th 2007)
Director: J.W.K.Harris, M.A. Suleman, and Leah Domb, Co-directors
Research Objectives: This field school will give participants the opportunity to experience the diverse habitats of Kenya, and to gain understanding about biodiversity by using primate field studies as the entry point.The curriculum will comprise lectures, readings, and discussions on concepts in primatology and conservation biology. We will review important notions in primate behavioral ecology, and learn about primate behavior and ecological data collection. The core of the field school will be training and practice of field methods. Participants will learn how to census primates, study social behavior and habitat use, practice animal identification, time budget analysis via scan and focal animal sampling, and how to measure habitat use.In order to expose the participants to methods used to study primates found in different habitat types, the field school will be conducted two ecologically different sites. A forest ecosystem in the Tana River Primate National Reserve (TRPNR) at the coast, and Kakamega Forest National Reserve.
Field Positions and Volunteers: Field school conducted by Rutgers University and the National Museums of Kenya provides research and training for undergraduates. Completion of the program earns a student six academic credits from Rutgers University (through study abroad office). Additional research opportunities may exist for study beyond the field school experience for graduate students.
Species Studied: Cercocebus galeritus (Tana River mangabey), Cercopithecus ascanius (red-tailed monkey), Cercopithecus mitis (blue monkey), Cercopithecus neglectus (de Brazza's monkey), Chlorocebus (vervet), Colobus (black-and-white colobus), Galago (lesser bushbaby), Otolemur (greater galago), Papio (baboon), Papio anubis (olive baboon), Piliocolobus rufomitratus (Tana River red colobus)
Comments: The Tana River forests contain high diversity of other species of rare animals and plants, and are designated as a global biodiversity hotspot. Three indigenous groups of people live within the vicinity of the reserve. For bird and butterfly enthusiasts,Kakamega Forest National Reserve is the place of choice. Being such a food rich reserve habitat, the park supports over 300 bird species and over 400 species of butterflies (about 45% of all recorded butterflies in Kenya); birdlife includes the endangered Turner's eremomela, Charpins flycatcher and the voice mimicking African grey parrot. Forest bucks, duikers and dik diks are also found in this enormously bio-diverse rain forest. Large age-old trees are in plenty as a result of early efforts in conservation.
Last Updated: 2007-02-27
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