May 28, 2008

WWF Official Information On Porboscis Monkey


WWF official Proboscis Monkey Information

We support the good work of the WWF but what they do in order to save Proboscis Monkey we hope to hear from them soon. Enclosed their recent info:

Distribution, habitat and behaviour

* Endemic to Borneo. Can be found along the coastal areas, mangrove swamps and riverine forests of Borneo.

* In 1977, there were about 6400 of them in Sarawak, but now there are only about 1000 in Sarawak, with perhaps another 2000 in Sabah and 4000 in Kalimantan. Some populations along the west coast of Sabah have disappeared entirely.

* The only known reserves to have a sustained and secure proboscis population are Tanjung Puting and possibly Mount Palung National Park in Kalimantan.


Description and natural history

* A very bizarre-looking primate, the tree-dwelling proboscis monkey gets its name from its huge pendulous nose. The nose overhangs the mouth and the monkey has to push it aside in order to eat. The female has a shorter and more snubby version.

* They have pot bellies and are very noisy primates with their strange honking sounds.

* Only primate species adapted for swimming with some webbing between its fingers. They are proficient swimmers, moving quietly (so as not to attract its natural predator, the crocodile) using a form of dog paddle, and like to dive off a tree branch high above the water, sometimes with babies clinging to their mothers’ fur.

* The male averages 24kg in weight, twice as much as the female. Hence it tends to move more carefully than the females or younger males do.

* Adults have an orangey red coat, greyish on their bottom half, and a long thick white tail. Newborns have deep blue faces with upturned noses, but assume adult colouring when they are about nine months old.

* Lives on a special diet of leaves, flowers and seeds of vegetation found only in riverine, peat swamps and mangrove forests.

Threats

* Because it feeds and lives in mangrove and riverine forests, the draining of wetlands and development along riverbanks for agricultural purposes and human settlement are its biggest threat through habitat loss.

* Peat fires.

* Sedimentation of lower river banks that change coastal soil ecology and vegetation.

Conservation

* Now listed as an endangered species, their long-term survival is dependent on protection given by gazetted parks and wildlife sanctuaries such as the proposed Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary, an important wetland in Sabah.

* Enforce protection, institute strict regulations on land use of wetlands and pollution management to minimise environmental damage to the specie’s natural habitats.



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