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Cercopithecine and Colobine Abundance Across Protected and Unprotected Land in the Greater Mahale Ecosystem, Western Tanzania

McLester, E, Pintea, L, Stewart, FA and Piel, AK (2019) Cercopithecine and Colobine Abundance Across Protected and Unprotected Land in the Greater Mahale Ecosystem, Western Tanzania. International Journal of Primatology. ISSN 0164-0291

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Open Access URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10764-0... (Published version)

Abstract

Most primates live in unprotected land where abundances and threats may differ from those in protected areas. We therefore need to establish population densities in both unprotected and protected areas to effectively inform conservation planning. The Greater Mahale Ecosystem in western Tanzania is a region of mixed protected status with seven cercopithecine and colobine species: blue (Cercopithecus mitis doggetti), red-tailed (C. ascanius schmidi), and vervet (Chlorocebus pygerythrus) monkeys; ashy red colobus (Piliocolobus tephrosceles); black-and-white colobus (Colobus angolensis); and olive (Papio anubis) and yellow (P. cynocephalus) baboons. These species may be threatened by increasing human activity; however, except for ashy red colobus, no data on local abundances are available. We walked over 350 km of line transects in legally protected (Village Forest Reserves) and unprotected general land between August 2011 and October 2012 to estimate densities of primates and human activity. Primate densities were consistently low across the Greater Mahale Ecosystem. Blue and red-tailed monkey and ashy red colobus densities were especially low compared to populations in predominantly forested landscapes. Primate and human activity densities did not differ significantly inside and outside of reserves. Low primate densities could be natural responses to the lower proportions and quality of riparian forest habitat in the region. High levels of human activity and the absence of significantly higher primate densities in reserves suggest unprotected land could provide important refuges for primates in the Greater Mahale Ecosystem. This result further reinforces a broad need to include unprotected areas in primate conservation strategies. © 2019, The Author(s).

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0608 Zoology
Subjects: Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Biological & Environmental Sciences (new Sep 19)
Publisher: SPRINGER
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2020 11:17
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2020 11:17
DOI or Identification number: 10.1007/s10764-019-00118-6
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/11961

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