NEWS FLASH — Peter Fundi and his team from the Institute for Primate Research fought slippery slopes and the beginning of the rains on the edge of the Aberdares to capture six more black-and-whites, including one several month old infant. The monkeys were held in the acclimatisation cage for three days and then released into the forest. Andrew Kuria, the IPR-FKF Colobus Field Assistant reports that all are doing well.
With more Colobus Monkeys transfers into the Karura Forest just before the recent rains, the total number has climbed to 86: a good start for a healthy population. The target is 100, according to the estimated availability of food plants for the monkeys. The black-and-whites are settling in and beginning to spread out: recently they have been spotted along the Family Trail between Junctions 2 and 3, and as far north as the Ruaka River swamp around Junction 39. One recent male, dubbed ‘Frenchie’ because of the red and blue paint markings on this white tail has been seen at Amani Garden.
The re-ntroduction of Colobus Monkeys (Colobus guereza kikuyuensis) began aover year ago. Under the careful and experienced protocols of the Institute of Primate Research (http://www.primateresearch.org/), FKF, along with KFS and KWS, and with more generous support from AFEW (African Fund for Endangered Wildlife) has brought this iconic highlands primate sub-species back to Karura Forest from remnant, endangered populations on the fringes of the Aberdares in the region of Kiribati and Wanjohi.
The releasees cannot believe their eyes: look at all the food!!
The isolated animals are gently encouraged to seek food in humane trap cages. The monkeys are first released in a large holding-acclimatisation cage in a hidden location in the heart of Karura, as you can see in the video. Colobus can now be spotted them in the forest canopy as you walk through the indigenous parts of the forest. Look for the conspicuous bushy white tale. And see more images on the FKF Facebook page by clicking here.