Through this grant for work on endangered primate research and conservation, Born Free has supported many young career conservationists in their hopes to help threatened wildlife.
Over the years, our support has contributed to the study and protection of a wide variety of species, including the red-bellied guenon, the white-thighed colobus, olive colobus, Barbary macaques, Preuss’ red colobus, western chimpanzees, the Caquetá Tití monkey, and the spider monkey.
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Tekou Ngunte Herve has been chosen as this year’s grant recipient, in recognition of his work to protect mandrills in Campo Ma’an National Park, Cameroon.
The £1,500 Grant, awarded annually by Born Free and The Primate Society of Great Britain (PSGB), the UK's national primatological society, supports researchers from countries with threatened primates – the group of mammals which includes apes, monkeys and lemurs.
2022 winner Tekou Ngunte Herve is working to protect Mandrill monkeys, which are classed and Critically Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), by halting the deforestation and degradation of their habitat, and tackling hunting and the bushmeat trade.
As part of his ambitious project, Tekou Ngunte Herve will work with the local community to increase awareness about the plight of mandrills and their habitat. He says: “The mandrill is such an endangered primate. We must avoid losing them and give a future generation a chance to live alongside primates."
The 2021 Conservation Grant was awarded to Eduardo Pinel, from Honduras, to fund a study into spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) in Mexico.
“Thanks to the support of Born Free and PSGB, I was able to start my project focused on understanding the importance of spider monkeys in forest regeneration in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico and at the same time evaluate the importance of these forests for the long term conservation of the monkeys. I have also been able to meet very kind people with a great ancestral knowledge of the area and nature and visit incredible places.”
In 2018, Laura Suarez Ramirez was awarded the PSGB Grant for her work on Colobus (Plecturocebus caquetensis), in Colombia.
“Thanks to the grant, I managed to get the first record of a primate of the Amazon called Miller's saki, (Pithecia milleri) and it was published in the journal Neotropical Primates. I am deeply grateful to Born Free. From the grant, not only did I manage to contribute a little to the conservation of a threatened species of my country, but I also grew professionally and was filled with courage to fight for my desire to study, conserve and learn from primates.”
Paul Tehoda was awarded the Grant in 2017, to fund his project on western chimpanzees in the Bia Conservation Area, Ghana.
“The Primate Society of Great Britain and the Born Free Foundation Primate Conservation Research Grant I received in 2017 was a stepping stone to strong foundation I have established in primate research and conservation in Ghana. This award was the first primate research grant I received to conduct an independent survey on the western chimpanzee in the Bia Conservation Area in southwestern Ghana. The grant helped leverage three additional funding grants later in the same year. The grant broadened my horizon in modern research techniques and paradigms in primate survey and conservation and positioned me to become a leader in western chimpanzee conservation in Ghana.”