Protecting brown spider monkeys and their habitats in a biodiversity hotspot in Colombia
Ana Gabriela de Luna Uribe
Brown spider monkeys are one the most endangered primates in the world mainly due to habitat destruction and hunting and aggravated by the absence of protected areas in the region. As we evidenced in our previous CLP project, brown spider monkeys play a key role in forest dynamics and its ecosystem services maintenance. The aim of this project is to improve the conservation status of the Critically Endangered brown spider monkey and its habitat in a fragmented landscape of the middle Magdalena River Valley in Colombia. We will work with local landowners in the creation and management of natural private reserves through voluntary conservation agreements. We will articulate our activities towards recovering ecosystem connectivity and habitat recovery. We will update data on the status and trends of the brown spider monkey population within the study region; highlight the role of natural private reserves on the conservation of these endangered primates and local biodiversity; and identify local threats and conservation opportunities. We will develop a communication and education program designed to influence conservation-oriented behaviours in five local communities living next to potential private conservation areas. We will translate our experiential workshops targeted to schools, community members and landowners into long-lasting effective conservation actions.