New Species of Monkeys in Peru: Biodiversity Implications

New Species of Monkeys in Peru: Biodiversity Implications

Question: For nearly a century, a small reddish brown monkey of the Titi species remained unidentified and unacknowledged as a new species. Discuss the implications of its recent discovery

A small reddish brown monkey species from Peru was recently discovered

- Its name is Callicebus urubambensis, named for the river along which it lives

- The discovery of new primates is very important

- Leaving aside prosimians, only 21 new species have been identified since 2000 according to IUCN

- Several of these are the titi species

- Jan Vermeer, a Dutch primatologist was responsible for the discovery of Callicebus urubambensis

About the Titi

- The name Titi is applied to 30 different kinds of monkeys falling under genus Callicebus

- These monkeys are indigenous to S. American jungles and smaller in size than a domestic cat

- They mainly eat fruits, mate for life and also adopt the young ones of other couples when it is a question of survival

- Males raise the young and hand them to the females for nursing

Facts and Stats

- Vermeer indicated that there was an additional species of Titi monkeys in South central Peru apart from C. brunneus, called so because of its darker brown colour, and another monkey named Toppin's Titi.

- Callicebus urubambensis or Urubamba brown titi monkey on the left bank of the Río Urubamba near Colonia Penal del Sepa, Peru was discovered

- C. urubambensis is probably not endangered, its likely range of habitat is large and sparsely populated, and has not been decimated by deforestation.

- Also, titis are not sought by local hunters and poachers, who favour bigger prey such as spider, woolly as well as howler monkeys.
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