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Quarters for Conservation: Colobus Conservation

Kathryn here, Quarters for Conservation champion for Colobus Conservation, with an update from Diani Beach, Kenya! I have mainly focused on the work Colobus Conservation does with forest restoration and the mitigation of primate-vehicle accidents by using “Colobridges” (monkey suspension bridges). However, today I wanted to share some more exciting things that Colobus Conservation does with research and rehabilitation.

The Angolan colobus monkey is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List, and therefore the need to protect, rehabilitate, and successfully hand-rear orphaned infants is so important. Angolan colobus monkeys’ digestive system is complex and fragile, which makes it very difficult to hand-rear infants. There has only been one successful hand-reared Angolan colobus at Colobus Conservation. In hopes to increase hand-rearing success, Marta Todo, a student from the United Kingdom, is currently conducting research for her PhD on the weaning of Angolan colobus infants. Colobus Conservation hopes that this research will help gain a deeper understanding and guide the modification of the existing hand-rearing protocols for colobus infants.  

Colobus Conservation also rehabilitates injured monkeys and releases them back into the wild. Unfortunately, some injuries are too severe and, in those cases, the monkey calls Colobus Conservation their new home. “Luz,” which means “light” in Spanish, is one of those non-releasable cases. Luz is a juvenile Angolan colobus monkey who was rescued after she got her leg stuck in a tree and was so desperate to get out that she fractured her leg in multiple places. The only way to save Luz was to amputate her hind limb. After surgery, she was placed in a small environment to minimize her movements until her leg healed. Now that Luz’s wound has healed, she has been moved into a larger area filled with enrichment to enhance her new one-legged jumping and climbing skills.

Colobus Conservation is continuously working to install and maintain the aerial suspension bridges, “Colobridges.” Two colobridges were recently installed to mitigate a couple new hotspots of road traffic accidents involving primates. The two bridges have been built and erected, adding to a total of 30 colobridges installed on the Diani Beach road. The bridges continue to be maintained on a weekly basis and checked to make sure that they do not have damage or rust and that the support poles are steady. This guarantees the safety of the public and the monkeys using the bridge.

The work needed from Colobus Conservation is never ending. Your vote will help support all the hard work and dedication to preserving Diani Beach coastal forest and saving Angolan colobus monkeys! Be the change; vote Colobus Conservation!

(photo courtesy Colobus Conservation)

Kathryn G.
Keeper III, Primates and Quarters for Conservation Champion, Colobus Conservation

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