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Propithecus candidus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA PRIMATES INDRIIDAE

Scientific Name: Propithecus candidus
Species Authority: A. Grandidier, 1871
Common Name/s:
English Silky Sifaka, Silky Simpona
Synonym/s:
Propithecus diadema (A. Grandidier, 1871) subspecies candidus
Taxonomic Notes: Considered a subspecies of P. diadema by Groves (2001), although Mayor et al. (2004) and Groves and Helgen (2007) considered it worthy of species status.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered C2a(i) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor/s: Andrainarivo, C., Andriaholinirina, V.N., Feistner, A., Felix, T., Ganzhorn, J., Garbutt, N., Golden, C., Konstant, B., Louis Jr., E., Meyers, D., Mittermeier, R.A., Patel, E., Perieras, A., Princee, F., Rabarivola, J.C., Rakotosamimanana, B., Rasamimanana, H., Ratsimbazafy, J., Raveloarinoro, G., Razafimanantsoa, A., Rumpler, Y., Schwitzer, C., Thalmann, U., Wilmé, L. & Wright, P.
Reviewer/s: Mittermeier, R.A. & Rylands, A.B. (Primate Red List Authority)
Justification:
Listed as Critically Endangered as the species is estimated to number less than 250 mature individuals, there is a continuing decline, and the number of mature individuals in any subpopulation is thought not to exceed 50 mature animals.
History:
2000 Critically Endangered
1996 Critically Endangered
1990 Endangered (IUCN 1990)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species has a very restricted range in north-eastern Madagascar that includes the humid forest belt extending from Maroantsetra to the Andapa Basin and the Marojejy Massif, but the precise limits of its distribution are unknown. Marojejy National Park represents the northern limit of its known distribution and the forests of Makira and the Antainambalana River are currently regarded as the southern limit. They are patchily distributed and occur at low densities. It is most commonly encountered at elevations between 700 and 1,875 m asl (Patel et al. 2007; Mittermeier et al. 2008).
Countries:
Native:
Madagascar
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This is one of the rarest and most threatened sifakas, believed to number less than 250 mature individuals. Sterling and McFadden (2000) provided two population density estimates within Marojejy: 40 individuals/km² and 90 individuals/km². Each estimate was from a different elevational range along the same main trail to the summit. However, this was a very short study from only one small section (the most well traveled) of Marojejy National Park, and clearly these estimates are not representative of the entire park (E. Patel pers. comm.). The numbers of known mature individuals in Marojejy is around a dozen mature individuals; six mature individuals are known from Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve (E. Patel pers. comm.).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is found mainly in tropical moist montane forest. This species has been the subject of one intensive 14.5 month study and a few short-term studies in Marojejy National Park and Anjanaharibe-Sud. Group size ranges from 2-9, and home ranges can exceed 40 ha. Groups spend about a quarter of their time traveling between foraging sites. Mating occurs just a few days each year between November and January, with young being born in June or July (Mittermeier et al. 2008, and references therein).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The major threats to this species are habitat destruction and hunting, particularly within the Marojejy Massif and Andapa Basin, and even within the boundaries of the only two protected areas in which it is found, Marojejy National Park and the Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve. Mining activities in Anjanaharibe-Sud are exacerbating hunting activities due to improved infrastructure. Large trucks have been observed containing rosewood, palissandre, ebony and other valuable hardwood trees that were illegally cut within Marojejy and Anjanaharibe-Sud (E. Patel pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is listed on Appendix I of CITES. It is found in the Marojejy National Park and the Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve, and (very rarely) the Anjanaharibe and Manandriana portions of Makira Protected Area north of the Antainambalana River. A small number of unexplored forest reserves and classified forests in north-eastern Madagascar are within the presumed range of this species and should be surveyed. Ambodivoahangy forest, where the species has been recorded, and the corridor between Betaolana and Anjanaharibe-Sud should be protected as a Conservation Site. Efforts aimed at ending lemur hunting in the Marojejy region and elsewhere should be continued and expanded. As of 2007, there are no animals held in captivity.

Bibliography [top]

Groves, C. P. 2001. Primate taxonomy. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC, USA.

Groves, C. P. and Helgen, K. M. 2007. Craniodental Characters in the Taxonomy of Propithecus. International Journal of Primatology 28: 1363-1383.

Mayor, M. I., Sommer, J. A., Houck, M. L., Zaonarivelo, J. R., Wright, P. C., Ingram, C., Engel, S. R. and Louis, E. E. 2004. Specific status of Propithecus spp. International Journal of Primatology 25: 875-900.

Mittermeier, R., Louis, E., Hawkins, F., Langrand, O., Ganzhorn, J., Konstant, W., Rasoloarison, R., Rajaobelina, S. and Richardson, M. 2008. Lemurs of Madagascar, 3rd edition. Conservation International.

Patel, E. R., Meyers, D. and Hawkins, F. 2007. Silky Sifaka, Propithecus candidus, 1871. Primate Conservation 22: 1-40.

Sterling, E. J. and Mcfadden, K. 2000. Rapid census of lemur populations in the Parc National de Marojejy, Madagascar. Fieldiana: Zoology 97: 265-274.

Citation: Andrainarivo, C., Andriaholinirina, V.N., Feistner, A., Felix, T., Ganzhorn, J., Garbutt, N., Golden, C., Konstant, B., Louis Jr., E., Meyers, D., Mittermeier, R.A., Patel, E., Perieras, A., Princee, F., Rabarivola, J.C., Rakotosamimanana, B., Rasamimanana, H., Ratsimbazafy, J., Raveloarinoro, G., Razafimanantsoa, A., Rumpler, Y., Schwitzer, C., Thalmann, U., Wilmé, L. & Wright, P. 2008. Propithecus candidus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 20 April 2014.
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