Monday, July 25, 2011

First Satellite Tagging Of Proboscis Monkey In Borneo

The Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) and Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC) have fitted a satellite tag on a proboscis monkey in Kinabatangan.

“This is the first time in Borneo that a proboscis monkey is tagged with a satellite device,” explained Dr Laurentius Ambu, director of the Sabah Wildlife Department.

“It is the start of a long-term research and conservation programme initiated by our department and the Danau Girang Field Centre and funded by Sime Darby Foundation,” he said.

“The animal, a 24-kg male, was caught by members of the Wildlife Rescue Unit and DGFC during the course of our Proboscis Monkey Programme initiated last week, which is a collaboration between SWD, DGFC and Cardiff University,” said Dr Senthilvel Nathan, SWD chief wildlife veterinarian currently doing his PhD with Cardiff University.

“We will catch proboscis monkeys in the whole state to collect blood for genetic analyses and parasite identification, saliva for viruses and bacteria, ectoparasites and morphometric data. We will also fit 10 individuals with satellite tags in the Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary,” Nathan said.

Dr Benoit Goossens, director of DGFC and leader of the programme, said the aim of the satellite tagging is to fully understand the ranging patterns of proboscis monkeys and the stressors impacting their movements and density in order to determine the adequate amount of habitat available towards sustaining a continuous viable population in the Kinabatangan region.

Full story here.

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