The Evolution Of The Primate Species Essay

1591 Words Oct 30th, 2014 null Page
The primate species that will be addressed for this paper is Presbytis (Semnopithecus) entellus, commonly known as the Hanuman gray langur. Despite being classified under “Least Concerned” on IUCN Red List, a population in Karnataka, India has decreased by a drastic 38% in 45 years and more attention needs to be paid to issues threatening conservation of Hanuman langurs [IUCN, 2008; Kumara et al., 2010]. Being primarily folivorous, habitat loss due to deforestation and intense agriculture are obvious issues. However, these are often dismissed because Hanuman langurs’ most exceptional trait is their ability to adapt to various environments with different landscapes and altitudes across South Asia [Koenig & Borries, 2001]. Another important quality of this species is their sacredness in the Hindu religion, which motivates locals to feed, respect and protect them [Koenig & Borries, 2001]. This brings us to the biggest threat of P. entellus that arose from their adjustment to human-dominated landscapes, which is human-primate conflict, more specifically primates being seen and aggressively dealt with as pests [Else, 1991]. Hanuman langurs are especially vulnerable to this threat since the reason why they can tolerate extreme environmental conditions is owing to their reliance on human provisions. In fact, human presence has greatly influenced many aspects of their behavioural ecology, hence why the emergence of humans as a threat is of paramount concern for this species.

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