Tag Archives: De Brazza’s monkey

Primates Guardian Diary

I have just returned from an expedition of the Wamba Valley on Mt Uarges the highest peak of Mathews ranges. This is one of several expeditions we undertake to monitor population of de Brazza’s monkey and the Endangered Mt Uarges guereza in the extensive Mathews ranges.
Accompanied by an experienced forest guide, we started our mission from Wamba on the foot of Mt Uarges climbing the steep mountain slowly in search of the Lkoroi (Mt Uarges guereza). We were also searching for the De Brazza’s monkey as we continue with our effort to map this newly discovered population. More new groups have been recorded after the 2007 pioneering survey and we are still scouting for more.
Five hours after we started our climb, we encountered the first group of Mt Uarges guereza at Sere Rongai from a distance. We counted three from the fleeing group, probably an indication that this population is frightened by human presence. Their flight distance was unusually long compared to other co-specifics living in safer habitats. This may be a good indicator of poaching in this habitat, the heartland of this Endangered sub-species.
At Lolng’eriyio near the peak of the mountain, we encountered another troop which fled on noticing our presence. This time we managed to count five adults. However, the next morning we were lucky to encounter this troop, this time counting twenty of them!
After the two days of extensive survey in the Wamba Valley, we didn’t see any De Brazza’s monkey. Has anyone seen De Brazza’s on Wamba Valley? Please contact us and we will go to the ground to verify.
In the meantime, I am planning my next expedition in other parts of the Mathews ranges. Check Primates Guardian Diary on this blog for more exciting news from the forest and awareness campaigns in the villages.




‘Mikiranyie Nkoroin’

In early May, 2010 I headed to Samburu to lead some primates’ conservation activities. With the help of team from Samburu, we carried out an intensive awareness campaign in Wamba by conducting an elder’s workshop representing the entire district and awareness outreach in two secondary Schools. The workshop was facilitated by two highly qualified natural resources managers from Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy. Our clarion call ‘Mikiranyie Nkoroin’ is an appeal to the ‘Moran’s’ to stop killing the Endangered Mt Uarges guereza for its skin. Below are some photos from these events.


Tom, one of the Facilitators explaining the distribution of de Brazza's monkey in Mathews range

Tom, one of the Facilitators explaining the distribution of de Brazza's monkey in Mathews range

A Pleasant Surprise

As we embark on the most important phase of the Samburu Primates Research and Conservation Project – communicating findings of four years of groundbreaking research in rare and endangered primates to the local stakeholders in Samburu, I would like to share with you some of the exciting information that we will be communicating and interpreting to decison makers starting this week with the Samburu elders. This will be followed by education outreach in schools to convey a similar message and raise awareness on primate’s conservation in Mathews range forest. 

‘’Iregi Mwenja is the first to admit how taken aback he was at the findings of his own pioneering survey of a ‘satellite’ De Brazza’s Monkey population on Kenya’s Mathews Range’.  Swara Editor, 2007. Click here to read the article: A new population of De Brazza’s monkey in Kenya.

Iregi Mwenja has led the Samburu Primates Research and Conservation Project since April 2006, pioneering groundbreaking research in rare and endangered primates of the region

Samburu Primates Project Recieves RSG Booster Grant

The Samburu Primates research and Conservation Project was recently  awarded a $19,000 Grant by the Rufford Small Grant Foundation. The RSG Booster Grant is meant for awareness rising activities in Samburu and does not offset administrative costs or pay salaries. The project targets rare and endangered primates found in remote areas which have not been previously addressed.


This awareness phase of  the project was preceded by 3 years of groundbreaking field assessments and monitoring, both of which were supported by RSG. We seek to interpret these findings to the local people, raise awareness among the key stakeholders and local communities to promote initiation of community based conservation actions and mainstream primate’s conservation in the ongoing environmental conservation activities in the Samburu. Ultimately the goal is to bring about behavior change to reduce poaching of the Endangered Mt Uarges guereza and enhance protection of the newly discovered de Brazza’s monkey population.

On behalf of the Project team, I want to thank RSG Foundation for this generous support (the third in three years!).

Starting this Christmas, check this blog for regular updates as the team on the ground embarks on an exciting campaign to save the rare and  endangered primates of Samburu.