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Geoffroy's Woolly Monkey (Lagothrix cana)

Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 0925808

Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation (Project No. 0925808) - Geoffroy's Woolly Monkey - Awarded $15,000 on January 01, 2010

WCS-Brazil is a Brazilian non-profit organization founded in 2003. Over the last five years, the organization has focused on conservation efforts in the Pantanal and Amazon regions. The strategy of WCS-Brasil is to identify critical conservation problems and develop science-based and community-driven solutions that benefit natural landscapes, wildlife, and human populations. WCS-Brasil is affiliated with Wildlife Conservation Society, the oldest conservation NGO in North America . WCS, whose headquarters are located in New York at the Bronx Zoo, supports conservation projects worldwide and maintains a number of affiliate offices. In Amazonas, WCS Brasil is currently working at the Mamirauá Sustainable Development Reserve and at the Piagaçu-Purus Sustainable Development Reserve – PP-SDR – one of the sites where this study will be conduct. Next steps consist in initiate scientific studies in the HeadWaters of Jari Lake National Park (HJL-NP), one of the lasts Unit of Conservation created by Brazilian government which is located in an adjacent area to PP-SDR.

The woolly monkey, Lagothrix cana, occurs only in the Amazon tropical forest, inhabiting primarily terra firma forests. Although its geographic distribution covers a wide area between Juruá river and the Tapajós and Juruema rivers, few studies was conducted until today assessing its populations, which makes it difficult to evaluate the conservation status of this species. Woolly monkeys are icons for conservation because they play vital roles in ecosystem structure, being important seed dispersers, play integral roles in food webs and represent high biomass in Amazon forests. Also, they have an economic importance to the local villagers, being as a protein item in their diet. In the present study we pretend (1) assess the conservation status of the woolly monkey’s population in two priorities conservation landscapes, (2) evaluate the relationship between human population and woolly monkeys and (3) transmit environmental education for local people so that they engage in the preservation of this species and consequently their habitats. We believe that in some sectors in the PP-SDR, where are higher density of human populations, we will find lower occurrence of this primate, while in sites far from the villages we will encounter higher abundance of it. Also, in the HJL-NP we hope found an important refuge of this species, due to inexistence of human population in the area.

Project 0925808 location - Brazil, South America