Protecting the critically endangered Colombian black spider monkeys
The Colombian black spider monkeys are one of the rarest and least studied primates in the world.
Threats facing Colombian spider monkeys
We all know the threats faced by our closest relatives, primates, across the world. So many of them face a bleak future because their forest homes are being torn down and the space they have left to live is dwindling fast. The Colombian black spider monkeys are one of the rarest and least studied primates in the world. They’re endemic to the Pacific coast of Colombia and a small part of eastern Panama, which means if we don’t protect this population, there is no hope for them.
In Colombia we’re starting from scratch. We don’t even know how many individuals are in the wild, or which forests they live in. At the same time, pressure is mounting that will impact their survival. Deforestation rates are increasing whilst commercial and subsistence hunting threaten individual monkeys. What was once a scarcely populated region – in this formerly notorious region – has now got an ever-increasing human population. This increases local development and exploits more local resources.
Promoting conservation locally
PTES is providing funds to Alma Hernandez and her team from the charity Neotropical Primate Conservation Colombia. They are planning to go into the region to promote conservation for the black Colombian spider monkeys. They will do this in collaboration with local communities. In tandem, they will be able to gather information to boost our knowledge about the species and fully understand the threats facing it.
The team will gather evidence both about these threatened primates and the local indigenous and migrant communities they live alongside. This will help the team create local solutions. It will also promote efficient conservation strategies appropriate to the challenges faced in the Colombian Pacific.