Proboscis monkey male in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary captured by researches. After tranquilisation, the animal is given a full medical check by Dr Senthilvel Nathan and Dr Diana Ramirez from the Wildlife Rescue Unit. Photo courtesy of the Sabah Wildlife Department.
Researchers with the Sabah Wildlife Department and Danau Girang Field Center in Malaysia have become the first to fit a proboscis monkey with a satellite tag.
The tag will help researchers track the 24-kg (53-lb) male in the forests of the Kinabatangan river basin. Ten more individuals will soon be tagged.
“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 in order to sustain a continuous viable population in the Kinabatangan region,” said Benoit Goossens, Director of DGFC and leader of the program. “One of the objectives is to identify the effectiveness of conservation corridors versus simple river buffer and to produce a model that can be used in conjunction with other projects to report on the effective conservation development of the Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary.”
Proboscis monkey family members in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary.
“This program is extremely important for the conservation of the proboscis monkey in Sabah, an endemic and endangered species in Borneo,” added Laurentius Ambu, Director of the Sabah Wildlife Department.
The project has support from Sime Darby Foundation, a Malaysian palm oil company; the Malaysian Palm Oil Council, a government-backed marketing body for Malaysian palm oil; and Shangri La’s Rasa Ria Resort.
The proboscis monkey is an endangered primate found only in the forests of Borneo. Males are characterized by a large nose. Habitat loss due to logging and plantation expansion is the biggest threat to the species. Hunting is also a risk in some areas.
Male proboscis monkey released where it was caught.