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Loris & Tarsier Conservation

Loris & Tarsier Conservation

Photo courtesy of the Danau Girang Field Centre

Latest news: Cleveland Metroparks Zoo's Executive Director, Chris Kuhar, weighs in on slow loris conservation with National Geographic. Read here!

Prosimians are generally small, mostly nocturnal primates that are not monkeys or apes. They have more primitive traits than other primates, such as moist noses, and they rely more on their sense of smell than their vision. Prosimians live in Asia and Africa (including Madagascar) and include lemurs, galagos, pottos, tarsiers and lorises. The small, naturally shy lorises were once little known, but their popularity has exploded in recent years due, in part, to videos on social media sites that depict lorises in private homes living as cuddly-looking pets. This online popularity has helped to fuel a cruel and unsustainable trade in lorises. The Little Fireface Project studies the ecology of the slow loris in the wild, and conducts active conservation education and awareness programs as well, empowering people both locally and internationally to help save this unique and threatened primate. Education and awareness programs target both local people and law enforcement officers, and inform international audiences that lorises are fascinating and beautiful wild animals, not pets. Learn more…

Slow lorises and tarsier are both small, nocturnal, and strictly arboreal primates found in the tropical forests of Southeast Asia. Both slow loris and Bornean tarsier are classified as “Vulnerable” due to habitat loss, hunting for food and medicinal purposes and the pet trade. The Danau Girang Field Centre is a collaborative research and training facility in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary in Sabah, Malaysia. The Centre is helping to shed light on how land use and human activity affect the conservation of these two unique and elusive primate species. The project is the first to look at the behavioral ecology of the Bornean slow loris, and the first radio-collar study of these two nocturnal primates in Southeast Asia. Information on the behavior, ecology and abundance of these small primate species is desperately needed to assist with conservation efforts and to promote the effective protection of these animals and their habitat.

Education for Nature –Vietnam (ENV) works in innovative ways to combat the illegal wildlife trade through environmental education and training, and promoting public awareness and action – empowering people to become part of the solution. ENV’s programs directly address the illegal trade of wildlife in Vietnam by reducing consumption and demand for wildlife products, supporting and strengthening law enforcement, mobilizing public support and participation, and working closely with decision-makers to influence policy, legislation, and decisions relevant to the protection of wildlife. ENV’s Wildlife Crime Units and Wildlife Protection Volunteer Network conduct monitoring, and work with investigators, volunteers and crime reporting networks to carry out awareness activities, and assist with investigations on wildlife crime cases.

The Zoo & Zoo Society also help to address the illegal wildlife trade through organizations such as the Wildlife Trade Monitoring Network (TRAFFIC), WildAid and the Coalition Against Wildlife Trafficking (CAWT).

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