Overview

Distribution

Range Description

This species occurs in scattered populations in isolated forest patches within south-western Nigeria (both west and east of the Niger River within the delta region) and southern Bénin (perhaps as far as Banon at 8°29' N) (Campbell et al. 2008) with a western limit up to the Kouffo River. Campbell et al. (2008) tentatively suggested its presence in the Dahomey Gap in the Togodo Forest in Togo, and subsequent survey work has confirmed this record (G. Nobime et al. unpubl.).

There are two subspecies: C. e. erythrogaster ranges from southern Benin, including the Forêt Classé de Lama (see Sinsin et al. 2002 for review), and C. e. pococki is known from Nigeria.
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Historic Range:
Western Nigeria

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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This species is found in primary, secondary and riverine lowland moist forest. The average group size is five animals although groups of up to 30 have been observed.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Associations

Niger Delta Terrestrial Vertebrate Associates

The Niger Delta is an enormous classic distributary system located in West Africa, which stretches more than 300 kilometres wide and serves to capture most of the heavy silt load carried by the Niger River. The peak discharge at the mouth is around 21,800 cubic metres per second in mid-October. The Niger Delta coastal region is arguably the wettest place in Africa with an annual rainfall of over 4000 millimetres. Vertebrate species richness is relatively high in the Niger Delta, although vertebrate endemism is quite low. The Niger Delta swamp forests occupy the entire upper coastal delta. Historically the most important timber species of the inner delta was the Abura (Fleroya ledermannii), a Vulnerable swamp-loving West African tree, which has been reduced below populations viable for timber harvesting in the Niger Delta due to recent over-harvesting of this species as well as general habitat destruction of the delta due to the expanding human population here. Other plants prominent in the inner delta flood forest are: the Azobe tree (Lophira alata), the Okhuen tree (Ricinodendron heudelotii ), the Bitter Bark Tree (Sacoglottis gabonensis), the Rough-barked Flat-top Tree (Albizia adianthifolia), and Pycnanthus angolensis. Also present in its native range is the African Oil Palm (Elaeis guineensis)

There are a number of notable mammals present in the upper (or inner) coastal delta in addition to the near-endemic White-cheeked Guenon (Cercopithecus erythrogaster, VU), the Critically Endangered Niger Delta Red Colubus (Procolobus pennantii ssp. epieni), which primate is endemic to the Niger Delta is found in the inner delta. The Endangered Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) is also found in the inner delta. The limited range Black Duiker (Cephalophus niger) is fournd in the inner delta and is a near-endemic to the Niger River Basin. The restricted distribution Mona Monkey (Cercopithecus mona), a primate often associated with rivers, is found here in the Niger Delta. The Near Threatened Olive Colobus (Procolobus verus) is restricted to coastal forests of West Africa and is found here in the upper delta.

Some of the reptiles found in the upper coastal Niger Delta are the African Banded Snake (Chamaelycus fasciatus); the West African Dwarf Crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis, VU); the African Slender-snouted Crocodile (Mecistops cataphractus); the Benin Agama (Agama gracilimembris); the Owen's Chameleon (Chamaeleo oweni); the limited range Marsh Snake (Natriciteres fuliginoides); the rather widely distributed Black-line Green Snake (Hapsidophrys lineatus); Cross's Beaked Snake (Rhinotyphlops crossii), an endemic to the Niger Basin as a whole; Morquard's File Snake (Mehelya guirali); the Dull Purple-glossed Snake (Amblyodipsas unicolor); the Rhinoceros Viper (Bitis nasicornis). In addition several of the reptiles found in the outer delta are found within this inner delta area.

Five threatened marine turtle species are found in the mangroves of the lower coastal delta: Leatherback Sea Turtle (Dermochelys coricea, EN), Loggerhead Sea Turtle (Caretta caretta, EN), Olive Ridley Turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea, EN), Hawksbill Sea Turtle (Eretomychelys imbricata, CR), and Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas, EN).

Other reptiles found in the outer NIger Delta are the Nile Crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus), African Softshell Turtle (Trionyx triunguis), African Rock Python (Python sebae), Boomslang Snake (Dispholidus typus), Cabinda Lidless Skink (Panaspis cabindae), Neon Blue Tailed Tree Lizard (Holaspis guentheri), Fischer's Dwarf Gecko (Lygodactylus fischeri), Richardson's Leaf-Toed Gecko (Hemidactylus richardsonii), Spotted Night Adder (Causus maculatus), Tholloni's African Water Snake (Grayia tholloni), Smith's African Water Snake (Grayia smythii), Small-eyed File Snake (Mehelya stenophthalmus), Western Forest File Snake (Mehelya poensis), Western Crowned Snake (Meizodon coronatus), Western Green Snake (Philothamnus irregularis), Variable Green Snake (Philothamnus heterodermus), Slender Burrowing Asp (Atractaspis aterrima), Forest Cobra (Naja melanoleuca), Rough-scaled Bush Viper (Atheris squamigera), and Nile Monitor (Varanus niloticus).

There are a limited number of amphibians in the inner coastal delta including the Marble-legged Frog (Hylarana galamensis). At the extreme eastern edge of the upper delta is a part of the lower Niger and Cross River watersheds that drains the Cross-Sanaka Bioko coastal forests, where the near endemic anuran Cameroon Slippery Frog (Conraua robusta) occurs.

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Life History and Behavior

Life Expectancy

Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 24 years (captivity) Observations: One wild born male was about 24 years old when he died in captivity (Richard Weigl 2005).
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
VU
Vulnerable

Red List Criteria
A2cd

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2008

Assessor/s
Oates, J.F., Gippoliti, S. & Bearder, S.

Reviewer/s
Mittermeier, R.A. & Rylands, A.B. (Primate Red List Authority)

Contributor/s

Justification
Listed as Vulnerable since the species is believed to have declined in the order of 30% over the past 27 years (three generations) due to high rates of habitat loss, mainly as a result of timber extraction and agriculture expansion, and hunting.

History
  • 2000
    Endangered
  • 1996
    Vulnerable
  • 1994
    Endangered
    (Groombridge 1994)
  • 1990
    Endangered
    (IUCN 1990)
  • 1988
    Endangered
    (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1988)
  • 1986
    Vulnerable
    (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1986)
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Current Listing Status Summary

Status: Endangered
Date Listed: 10/19/1976
Lead Region: Foreign (Region 10) 
Where Listed: Entire


Population detail:

Population location: Entire
Listing status: E

For most current information and documents related to the conservation status and management of Cercopithecus erythrogaster , see its USFWS Species Profile

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Population

Population
It has a scattered distribution and is generally rare, but can be locally abundant (e.g., around Okomu National Park in Nigeria which was originally established for this species and where they are now flourishing).

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
The forest habitat in the range of this species has been heavily degraded and exploited. The remaining patches of forest are threatened in particular by timber extraction and conversion to agricultural land. In the Niger Delta, forest degradation is mainly through large-scale artisanal felling of commercial trees, but not widespread conversion to farmland, with the result that potential suitable habitat remains. This species is also hunted for meat.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species is listed on Appendix II of CITES and on Class A of the African Convention on the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. In Nigeria it is present Okomu National Park and in a number of forest reserves (e.g., Udo, Omo, Oluwa, and Ifon Forest Reserves). Strict protection of remaining forest habitat and hunting restrictions are needed. It is present in sacred groves in Benin but is not strictly protected.
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Wikipedia

White-throated guenon

The white-throated guenon (Cercopithecus erythrogaster), also known as the red-bellied monkey and the red-bellied guenon, is a diurnal primate that lives on trees of rainforests or tropical areas of Nigeria and Benin.

The white-throated guenon is usually a frugivore but insects, leaves, and crops are also in its diet. It usually lives in small groups of four to five individual monkeys however, there have been groups of 30 discovered, and in cases, some males wander alone. It is arboreal, living in moist tropical forest and the wettest parts of dry tropical forest, however it can also be found in secondary bush and old farmland.

Males weigh from 3.5–4.5 kg and females weigh 2–4 kg. Females give birth to one offspring, which is a factor of decreasing population.

The white-throated guenon was once considered extinct due to constant hunting for the fur of its unique red belly and white front legs. Yet, a small group was found near the Niger River in 1988.

The white-throated guenon is still considered a vulnerable species near extinction due to its decreasing population. Today, its territory is protected and regarded as a holy land, where hunting and logging is restricted. It is one of the species that live in the Guinean Forests of the West Africa Biodiversity Hotspot.

There are two subspecies of white-throated guenon:

References

  1. ^ Groves, C. P. (2005). In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 156. OCLC 62265494. ISBN 0-801-88221-4. 
  2. ^ Oates, J. F., Gippoliti, S. & Bearder, S. (2008). Cercopithecus erythrogaster. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
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