Feeds

Celebrity monkey fans wowed by new genus

Baboonacy

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Rungwecebus kipunjiZoologists have described the first new genus of African monkey in 83 years. The new species, named Rungwecebus kipunji, is so different from other monkeys that a new grouping had to be specially created.

Rungwecebus kipunji (pictured) was first described in 2005 from two sightings in Tanzania. Based on photographs, it was originally placed in the preexisting Mangebey genus Lophocebus.

A young male specimen captured by a farmer in a cornfield outside the forest has allowed the team a more detailed look at the mysterious primate, though.

Writing in the journal Science Express, zoologists from the Wildlife Conservation Socity, Yale, the Field Museum of Natural History, and the University of Alaska say the most distinctive characteristics of Rungwecebus are its white mohawk and "honk-bark" call.

Its genetics put it closest to burly ground-based baboons. The shape of its skull marks the lithe 90cm tall, 4kg tree-dwelling scamp as something more novel, however. Lead study author Dr Tim Davenport said: "The discovery of a new primate species is an amazing event, but the discovery of a new genus makes this animal a true conservation celebrity. The scientific community has been waiting for eight decades for this to happen."

The new genus is named after Mount Rungwe in Tanzania, where it is most abundant. Temperatures at the high altitudes Rungwecebus inhabits frequently drop below zero; its long grey coat is an adaptation to the harsh conditions.

Conservationists involved in the study warn that the new genus is already under threat from habitat destruction and hunting. Dr John G Robinson said: "It would be the ultimate irony to lose a species this unique so soon after we have discovered it." ®

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.