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Western black crested gibbon. Credit: Fan Pengfei

World’s leading primatologists gather in Vietnam for international summit

Posted on: 01.09.14 (Last edited) 1 September 2014

Primate scientists share knowledge and latest learnings at the 25th International Primatalogical Society congress in Hanoi

The International Primatological Society (IPS) Congress, the largest meeting of the world’s leading primatology experts, was held recently in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Organised by the Administration of Forestry in Vietnam, Fauna & Flora International (FFI) supported the process in ensuring the country host the 25th IPS, given the importance of local populations of threatened primates – and those in neighbouring countries – to current primate conservation.

A rare sighting of a Tonkin snub-nosed monkey in Tung Vai, Vietnam, is captured on film. Credit: Nguyen Van Truong/FFI

A rare sighting of a Tonkin snub-nosed monkey in Tung Vai, Vietnam, is captured on film. Credit: Nguyen Van Truong/FFI

With 900 delegates and as many presentations over the five-day congress, the meeting was based around the theme Meeting the Challenges of Conserving Primate Diversity.

Dr Ben Rawson, FFI’s Indo-Burma Primate Conservation Programme Manager, who was part of the Scientific Committee, stated that the location enabled the attendance of some of primatology’s newest stars. “Given Vietnam’s locational importance in primate conservation it was great the congress was held here. It gave many of our staff an opportunity to attend – to both learn and present their own findings to a congregation of their peers – the world’s leading primatology experts.”

Field staff from FFI teams in Myanmar, China, and Vietnam presented at the congress.

Dr Rawson continued, “Nguyen Duc Tho (Communication and Education Officer) presented on community-based conservation of the Tonkin snub-nosed monkey, while Nguyen Van Truong, (Programme Biologist) and Nguyen The Cuong (Cao Vit Gibbon Conservation Project Manager) respectively presented on population rebound in the Critically Endangered Tonkin snub-nosed monkey and cao vit gibbon as a result of FFI conservation initiatives.

Nguyen The Cuong presented on cao vit gibbon population rebound as a result of FFI conservation initiatives. Credit: Ben Rawson/FFI

Nguyen The Cuong presented on cao vit gibbon population rebound as a result of FFI conservation initiatives. Credit: Ben Rawson/FFI

“Zhang Yingyi from our China team spoke on conserving China’s primate fauna and Saw Soe Aung from our Myanmar Programme presented on the country-wide gibbon survey work which has helped shape priorities for Burmese investment.”

Participants of the 25th IPS Congress Credit: Ben Rawson/FFI

Participants of the 25th International Primatological Society Congress Credit: Ben Rawson/FFI

Dr Rawson co-presented on ‘Best Practice Guidelines for Gibbon Rehabilitation and Translocation’, provided attendees with an update on the status of the Cat Ba langur, including population modeling work.

He also organised and chaired a symposium on gibbon conservation.

A book is likely to come from the Gibbon Conservation symposium and Best Practice Guidelines on gibbon population monitoring.

The next International Primatological Society congress will be held in 2016 in Chicago.

Written by
Ally Catterick

Ally worked in media management and PR for clients including comedians Eddie Izzard and Ed Byrne before becoming Publicity Manager for the Melbourne International Arts Festival. Strategy and communications for conservation organisation Greening Australia and her role as Unit and Company Publicist for production company Roving Enterprises followed, until she was introduced to FFI upon their arrival in Australia in 2008. Ally became a founding board member – until moving to the UK to become the organisation's Communications Manager. Ally is now FFI's Deputy Director of Communications and oversees all communications for FFI globally.

Other posts by Ally Catterick

Given Vietnam’s locational importance in primate conservation it was great the congress was held here

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