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Primate Conservation

Coordinators:  Dean Anderson and Nancy Ruggeri, Department of Zoology,
University of Wisconsin-Madison

The World's Top 25 Most Endangered Primates- 2002

A recent report released by Conservation International (CI) and the Primate Specialist
Group of IUCN was finalized at the 2002 International Primatological Society meetings
in Beijing. It is a revision of their previously released "The World's Top 25 most Endangered Primates",
which indicates that about one out of every three primate species is currently
threatened with extinction.  This updated version suggests that Indonesia now exceeds
Madagascar and Brazil for the country with the most endangered primates.  However,
Madagascar, identified as one of the world's biodiversity hotspots, has 10 critically endangered
species, and 21 endangered species.  For the full report, please refer to the link at the bottom
of this message.

Each week, we will be featuring one of the 25 primate species in peril.  This is being
done in conjunction with Conservation International.  The fact sheets are compiled by
Sean Flannery at the WPRC Library and Information Service.

Northern Muriqui (Brachyteles hypoxanthus)

Photo Link:

The northern muriqui is the most threatened of the two critically endangered muriquis, its total
numbers being lower and its populations being smaller and more fragmented 
than those of the southern muriqui (Brachyteles arachnoides). These are the largest primates 
in South America and both are endemic to Brazil's Atlantic Forest region. The most significant 
population of northern muriquis is found in the forests of Fazenda Montes Claros in the state of 
Minas Gerais, where more than 100 animals were protected for the last 50 years 
by Senhor Feliciano Miguel Abdala, a private landowner who also made a 
tremendous contribution to our knowledge of the muriqui's ecology and behavior 
by establishing the Caratinga Biological Station in 1983. Shortly after Senhor 
Abdala's death last year, the forests of Caratinga became a permanent private 
reserve under Brazilian law, and will be protected in the years ahead by local 
non-governmental organizations. Dr. Karen Strier (University of 
Wisconsin-Madison) continues to supervise field studies at Caratinga with the 
assistance of Brazilian colleague Eduardo Veado. A couple of years ago, only 
eight populations of northern muriqui could be documented, at least two of them 
containing less than 10 individuals and very likely being non-viable. Recent 
surveys by Brazilian primatologist S้rgio Mendes, however, have helped identify 
nine new populations in the state of Espirito Santo and have increased our 
estimate of the total population from about 300 to 400 or more.

Relevant Citations:

Strier KB ; Dib LT ; Figueira JEC.  Social dynamics of male muriquis 
(Brachyteles arachnoides hypoxanthus).  BEHAVIOUR. 2002. 139(2-3). Pgs: 
Strier KB.  Population viabilities and conservation implications for muriquis (Brachyteles arachnoides) in Brazil's Atlantic Forest.  BIOTROPICA. 2000. 32(4b). Pgs: 903-913
Printes RC ; Strier KB.  Behavioral correlates of dispersal in female muriquis (Brachyteles arachnoides).  INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PRIMATOLOGY. 1999. 20(6). Pgs: 941-960
Fact Sheet: The full report is available at: Full report _________________________________________________________________ Topics in Primate Conservation is supported by a grant RR00167, Regional Primate Centers Program, National Center for Research Resources, The National Institutes of Health. _________________________________________________________________ Posted Date: 1-23-03