Friday, January 20, 2012

Miller's Grizzled Langurs, thought to be extinct, have been rediscovered

More good news heading our way. Another primate who was thought to be extinct has now been rediscovered in the jungles of Borneo. Published in the latest edition of American Journal of Primatology, the Miller's Grizzled Langur (Presbytis hosei carnicrus) was rediscovered in Wehea Forest, an area outside of its known range. Thought to have gone extinct as early as 2004, subsequent expedition in 2008 in search of P.h. carnicrus was to no avail, supporting the hypothesis that this species had went extinct.

There was virtually no photographs of Miller's Grizzled Langurs except from museum sketches.
Illustration by Stephen Nash, from Mammals' Planet.

Call it the luck of the draw. The scientific team who photographed these langurs initially set up camera traps to take pictures of clouded leopards, orangutans and other critter that congregate on salt licks. Then they discovered that the camera traps had taken photos of langurs that they have never seen before. Until now, there was no photograph of this species ever in existence; only images from museum sketches. Based on these museum sketches, the team later confirmed that the langurs from the photos are indeed P. h. carnicrus.

Brent Loken, one of the lead researchers, was excited about this rediscovery, "We were all pretty ecstatic. The fact that, wow, this monkey still lives, and also that it's in Wehea ... While our finding confirms the monkey still exists in East Kalimantan, there is a good chance that it remains one of the world's most endangered primates".

A Miller's Grizzled Langur. Photo by Eric Fell, from EurekAlert!

A Miller's Grizzled Langur. Photo by Eric Fell, from EurekAlert!


 A video from Scientific American shows time-lapse photos of these langurs at the salt licks.


 For more, read:
'Extinct' monkey rediscovered in Borneo by new expedition on EurekAlert!
Extremely Rare Primate, Believed Nearly Extinct, Discovered in Remote Borneo Forest on Planet Save.
Nearly Extinct Primate Rediscovered in Borneo [Video] on Scientific American

The paper, titled "Discovery of Miller’s Grizzled Langur (Presbytis hosei canicrus) in Wehea Forest confirms the continued existence and extends known geographical range of an endangered primate" is supposed to have went live but I couldn't find it. I will update this page with a URL for the paper once it's available.

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