Trachypithecus johnii 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Primates Cercopithecidae

Scientific Name: Trachypithecus johnii (J. Fischer, 1829)
Common Name(s):
English Nilgiri Langur, Black Leaf Monkey, Hooded Leaf Monkey, Indian Hooded Leaf Monkey, John's Langur, John’s Langur, Nilgiri Black Langur, Nilgiri Leaf Monkey
French Langur Du Nilgiri, Semnopithèque Des Nilgiris
Spanish Langur De Nilgiri
Presbytis johnii (??)
Trachypithecus cucullatus (Fischer, 1829)
Trachypithecus johnii
Trachypithecus jubatus (Wagner, 1839)
Trachypithecus leonina (Shaw, 1800)
Taxonomic Notes: This taxon is sometimes considered to be in the genus Semnopithecus.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable C2a(i) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Singh, M., Kumar, A. & Molur, S.
Reviewer(s): Mittermeier, R.A. & Rylands, A.B. (Primate Red List Authority)
Listed as Vulnerable as the number of mature individuals is less than 10,000 (Molur et al. 2003) across many, severely fragmented locations, with continuing decline in habitat quality, area and with no subpopulation containing more than 1,000 mature individuals.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species occurs only in the Western Ghats in southwestern India (Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu). It is found, rather unevenly, in the hill country of the Western Ghats from the Aramboli Pass (at 8°16’N near the southern tip of India) north to Srimangala (12°01’N, 75°58’E) (Groves 2001).
Countries occurrence:
India (Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu)
Additional data:
Lower elevation limit (metres):300
Upper elevation limit (metres):2000
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Molur et al. (2003) estimate a total population of less than 20,000 (<10,000 mature) individuals, based on studies in a few areas (Karnataka, M. Singh pers. comm.; Kerala, S. Ram ongoing study; Tamil Nadu, M. Singh and A. Kumar pers. comm.) and extrapolated to the rest of its distribution. After the introduction of the Indian Wildlife Protection Act in 1972, the population has increased (Kurup 1979), and this trend was seen until the early 1990s. The population since then has been relatively stable (A. Kumar and M. Singh pers. comm.).
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species is found in evergreen, semi-evergreen, moist deciduous forests, montane evergreen forests and in riparian forests in lower altitudes in some places (e.g. Megamalai and Anamalai) (Kurup 1979; Singh et al. 1997). It ranges from 300 to 2,000 m in elevation (Molur et al. 2003).

It is folivorous, but will also eat flowers, buds, seeds, bark, stems, insects, and earth (Roonwal and Mohnot 1977; Poirier 1969; Oates et al. 1979); it has been reported to be a facultative frugivore (Sushma and Singh 2006). It has also been reported to forage for cultivated cabbage, potatoes, and cauliflower and ornamental garden poppies (Poirier 1969). It is arboreal, diurnal, and typically occurs in uni-male groups (Molur et al. 2003), usually with nine or ten animals in a group.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is hunted for its skin, which is used for making drums, as well as for other parts of the body, which are used for meat as well as in traditional “medicine” (Roonwal and Mohnot 1977). Hunting has decreased in recent years due to better protection and NGO activities through community participation (A. Kumar and M. Singh pers. comm.).
According to Molur et al. (2003), past and present threats include habitat loss due to crop plantations, mining, dams, fragmentation, human settlement, hunting, road kills, deliberate fires, storms/flooding, landslides, and local trade for pets. Although fragmentation and habitat loss are threats, this species is not affected as much as lion-tailed macaques (M. Singh pers. comm.). They are better dispersers and have better colonization ability (A. Kumar pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species is listed on CITES Appendix II, and Schedule I, Part I of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 amended up to 2002 (Molur et al. 2003).

This species is known to occur in numerous protected areas, including: Aaralam Sanctuary, Brahmagiri Sanctuary, Chimmony Sanctuary, Chinnar Sanctuary, Eravikulam National Park, Grizzled Giant Squirrel Sanctuary, Idukki Sanctuary, Indira Gandhi Sanctuary, Kalakkad Sanctuary, Mudumalai Sanctuary, Mukurthi National Park, Mundanthurai Sanctuary, Neyyar Sanctuary, Parambikulam Sanctuary, Peechi Sanctuary, Peppara Sanctuary, Periyar National Park, Periyar Sanctuary, Shendurney Sanctuary, Silent Valley National Park, Thattekadu Sanctuary, Wayanad Sanctuary (Molur et al. 2003).

The following are recommended areas of research: taxonomy, life history, survey studies, and ecology. The following are recommended management actions: habitat management, monitoring, public education, poaching control measures, Population and Habitat Viability Assessment, and prevention of conversion of forest areas to private lands, prevention of conversion of natural private forests, coffee and cardamom plantations into tea plantations (Molur et al. 2003; M. Singh pers. comm.)

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Forest -> 1.9. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Montane
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection
1. Land/water protection -> 1.2. Resource & habitat protection
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management
3. Species management -> 3.1. Species management -> 3.1.1. Harvest management
4. Education & awareness -> 4.1. Formal education

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
  Included in international legislation:Yes
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:Yes
1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.1. Housing & urban areas
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.2. Small-holder farming
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

3. Energy production & mining -> 3.2. Mining & quarrying
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

4. Transportation & service corridors -> 4.1. Roads & railroads
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

5. Biological resource use -> 5.1. Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals -> 5.1.1. Intentional use (species is the target)
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

7. Natural system modifications -> 7.1. Fire & fire suppression -> 7.1.3. Trend Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

7. Natural system modifications -> 7.2. Dams & water management/use -> 7.2.11. Dams (size unknown)
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

1. Research -> 1.1. Taxonomy
1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
1. Research -> 1.6. Actions
3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends

♦  Food - human
 Local : ✓ 

♦  Medicine - human & veterinary
 Local : ✓ 

♦  Handicrafts, jewellery, etc.
 Local : ✓ 

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 Local : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

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

Hohmann, G. 1989. Group fission in Nilgiri langurs (Presbytis johnii). International journal of primatology 10(5): 441–454.

Horwich, R. 1972. Home range and food habits of the Nilgiri langur, Presbytis johnii. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 69: 255-267.

Joseph, G. and Ramachandran, K. 2003. Distribution and demography of the Nilgiri langur (Trachypithecus johnii) in Silent Valley National Park and adjacent areas, Kerala, India. Primate Conservation 19: 78-82.

Kurup, G. 1979. Conservation of lion-tailed macaque (Macaca silenus) and Nilgiri langur (Presbytis johnii). Tiger Paper 6(4): 17–19.

Molur, S., Brandon-Jones, D., Dittus, W., Eudey, A., Kumar, A., Singh, M., Feeroz, M. M., Chalise, M., Priya, P. and Walker, S. 2003. Status of South Asian Primates: Conservation Assessment and Managment Plan Report. Workshop Report, 2003. Zoo Outreach Organization/CBSG-South Asia, Coimbatore, India.

Oates, J. 1979. Comments on the geographical distribution and status of the south Indian black leaf-monkey (Presbytis johnii). Mammalia 43: 485 – 493.

Poirier, F. 1969. The Nilgiri langur (Presbytis johnii) troop: its composition, structure, function and change. Folia Primatologica 10(1): 20 – 47.

Ram, S. and Srinivas, V. 2001. Comments on the current geographical distribution of the Nilgiri langur (Trachypithecus johnii, Fisher) in Kerala, India. Asian Primates 7(3-4): 17-18.

Roonwal, M. and Mohnot, S. 1977. Primates of South Asia: Ecology, Sociobiology and Behavior. Cambridge.

Singh, M., Singh, M., Kumara, H.N., Kumar, M.A. and D'Souza, L. 1997. Inter and intra specific associations of non-human primates in Anailmalai Hills, south India. Mammalia 61(1): 17 - 28.

Sushma, H. and Singh, M. 2006. Resource partitioning and interspecific interactions among sympatric rain forest arboreal mammals of the Western Ghats, India. Behavioral Ecology 17(3): 479-490.

Citation: Singh, M., Kumar, A. & Molur, S. 2008. Trachypithecus johnii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T44694A10927987. . Downloaded on 18 June 2018.
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