Wednesday, August 31, 2011

New Monkey Species Discovered in Remote Amazon

08.26.2011LinkSource: Treehugger


In a race to beat loggers, scientists traveled to Mato Grosso, a Brazilian state that is home to a largely unexplored section of the Amazon rainforest—and some of the highest rates of deforestation in the country.

There, they made sightings of several rare species and discovered what is believed to be a new species of monkey.

Belonging to the Callicebus genus, the new species is thought to be a variation of the titi monkey. JĂșlio Dalponte, a biologist who made the discovery, explained that "this primate has features on its head and tail that have never been observed before in other titi monkey species found in the same area."

"This incredibly exciting discovery shows just how much we still have to learn from the Amazon," said Meg Symington, Director of WWF's Amazon Program, which was a backer of the expedition. "WWF has been working with the government of Brazil to increase protection and improve management for the Amazon so that species like this, and thousands of others, don't disappear before we even know about them.

In addition to the new species, the team spotted giant anteater, giant armadillo, giant otter, jaguar and ocelot. The sightings underscore biological richness and significance of the region which is under threat from logging, expanding agricultural land, and unregulated fishing.
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