Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Orphan chimpanzees successfully released into the wild using advanced GPS technology

Date:
May 27, 2011
Source:
University of Kent
Summary:
The 2008 release of 12 orphan chimpanzees into the wild using sophisticated GPS tracking technology has been deemed a success by the project team. The release was the first of its kind to use VHF-GPS store-on-board ARGOS tracking collars to monitor the progress of the chimpanzees. It is also only the second time that rehabilitated chimpanzees have been released back into the wild in an area where other wild chimpanzees live.

Six males and six females between eight and 20 years old were released in June 2008. Over two years after the release, nine chimpanzees remain free-living with two males and three females forming a group at the original release site. Two of these females gave birth to healthy offspring and another female successfully integrated into a wild chimpanzee community.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Kent

The 2008 release of 12 orphan chimpanzees into the wild using sophisticated GPS tracking technology has been deemed a success by the project team.

The release was the first of its kind to use VHF-GPS store-on-board ARGOS tracking collars to monitor the progress of the chimpanzees. The ARGOS system emits GPS points to satellites downloadable via the internet. It is also only the second time that rehabilitated chimpanzees have been released back into the wild in an area where other wild chimpanzees live.

Dr Tatyana Humle from the University of Kent is the scientific advisor to the project, which is being carried out by the Chimpanzee Conservation Centre in the Haut Niger National Park, Guinea, West Africa. This centre is one of 14 Pan African Sanctuary Alliance (PASA)-accredited sanctuaries caring for chimpanzee victims of the pet and bush meat trade.

Six males and six females between eight and 20 years old were released in June 2008. Over two years after the release, nine chimpanzees remain free-living with two males and three females forming a group at the original release site. Two of these females gave birth to healthy offspring and another female successfully integrated into a wild chimpanzee community.

The release presented a number of challenges for researchers including finding a suitable release area, assessing its overlap with the home range of other wild chimpanzees to minimize competition and the risk of aggression, and ensuring the chimpanzees' ability to survive independently of human assistance.

The GPS points stored on the collars allowed researchers to monitor the chimpanzees' behaviour including their habitat use, day travel range and association patterns. The ARGOS system also facilitated several rescue missions to retrieve chimpanzees when they strayed too far from the protected release site.

The release project has brought significant conservation benefits to the local area. Environmental education and awareness raising programs have been established in and around the park, illegal logging activities have stalled and illegal hunting and fishing activities have been reduced.

Other sanctuaries and conservation centres are set to benefit significantly from the project's pioneering use of new technology.

Dr Humle, from the University's School of Anthropology and Conservation, said: 'This release demonstrates that under special circumstances the release of wild-born adult chimpanzees of both sexes is a viable strategy, which can also function as an effective conservation tool.

'The lessons learnt and the experience gained so far will benefit other sanctuaries that are also considering the option of releasing suitable candidates in the future. We still have much to learn about how rehabilitation, pre- and post-release procedures, and monitoring protocols impact release success. We can only hope that increased collaboration among academics, conservationists and sanctuaries will help bridge these gaps.'


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Kent. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Tatyana Humle, Christelle Colin, Matthieu Laurans, Estelle Raballand. Group Release of Sanctuary Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) in the Haut Niger National Park, Guinea, West Africa: Ranging Patterns and Lessons So Far. International Journal of Primatology, 2010; 32 (2): 456 DOI: 10.1007/s10764-010-9482-7

Cite This Page:

University of Kent. "Orphan chimpanzees successfully released into the wild using advanced GPS technology." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110407121638.htm>.
University of Kent. (2011, May 27). Orphan chimpanzees successfully released into the wild using advanced GPS technology. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110407121638.htm
University of Kent. "Orphan chimpanzees successfully released into the wild using advanced GPS technology." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110407121638.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Reuters - US Online Video (July 24, 2014) An 8-year-old boy is bitten in the leg by a shark while vacationing at a Florida beach. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 24, 2014) The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, mainly known for conflict and instability, is an unlikely place for the production of fine cheese. But a farm in the village of Masisi, in North Kivu is slowly transforming perceptions of the area. Known simply as Goma cheese, the Congolese version of Dutch gouda has gained popularity through out the region. Ciara Sutton reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dogs Appear To Become Jealous Of Owners' Attention

Dogs Appear To Become Jealous Of Owners' Attention

Newsy (July 23, 2014) A U.C. San Diego researcher says jealousy isn't just a human trait, and dogs aren't the best at sharing the attention of humans with other dogs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Professor Creates Site Revealing Where People's Cats Live

Professor Creates Site Revealing Where People's Cats Live

Newsy (July 23, 2014) ​It's called I Know Where Your Cat Lives, and you can keep hitting the "Random Cat" button to find more real cats all over the world. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins