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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Assessment of the release of rehabilitated vervet monkeys into the Ntendeka Wilderness Area, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa: a case study

Published source details

Guy A.J., Stone O.M. & Curnoe D. (2012) Assessment of the release of rehabilitated vervet monkeys into the Ntendeka Wilderness Area, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa: a case study. Primates, 53, 171-9


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Reintroduce primates into habitat where the species is absent Primate Conservation

A before-and-after trial in 2009–2010 in South Africa found that more than half of captive, wild-born vervet monkeys Chlorocebus aethiops that were reintroduced into habitat where the species was absent alongside other interventions, survived for at least six months after release. Three (19%) individuals were reported dead. Of these, two were killed by predators and one by domestic hunting dogs Canis lupus familiaris. Four individuals (25%) went missing. One infant was born two weeks after release. The species was absent from the area of reintroduction. Monkeys were introduced as one troop of 16 individuals. To acclimatize, they spent one day in a release enclosure (49 m2). Monkeys were provided supplementary food twice per day for two weeks and once per day for a further three weeks. The release site was a protected area. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Reintroduce primates into habitat with predators Primate Conservation

A before-and-after trial in 2009–2010 in coastal Ngume Forest, South Africa found that more than half of the captive, wild-born vervet monkeys Chlorocebus aethiops that were reintroduced into habitat with predators, survived for at least six months after release. Three of the 16 reintroduced monkeys (19%) were reported dead. Of these, two were killed by natural predators and one by hunting dogs Canis lupus familiaris. Four individuals (25%) went missing. One infant was born two weeks after release. Monkeys were introduced as a troop of 16 individuals into habitat where the species was absent. To acclimatize, monkeys spent one day in a release enclosure (49 m2). Monkeys were provided supplementary food twice a day for two weeks and once a day for a further three weeks after release. The release site was nationally protected. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Rehabilitate injured/orphaned primates Primate Conservation

A before-and-after trial in 2009-2010 in coastal forest in Ntendeka Wilderness Area, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa found that over half of reintroduced, captive, wild-born vervet monkeys Chlorocebus aethiops that were rehabilitated before release into the wild along with other interventions, survived for at least six months after release. Three individuals (19%) died. Two were killed by predators and one by domestic hunting dogs Canis lupus familiaris. Four individuals (25%) disappeared. One female gave birth to an infant two weeks after release. Individuals were rehabilitated in a 306.72 m2, 3.2 m high enclosure built on open grassland and enriched with pole-planted trees, hanging tyres, ropes, shade cloth hammocks, and a shaded shelter. Monkeys were introduced as one troop of 16 individuals into habitat without resident vervets and with predators. Monkeys spent one day in a release enclosure (49 m2). Supplementary food was provided twice per day for two weeks and daily during three weeks after release. The release site was protected as a wilderness area. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Provide supplementary food for a certain period of time only Primate Conservation

A before-and-after trial in 2009-2010 in coastal forest in Ntendeka Wilderness Area, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa found that over half of the reintroduced, captive, wild-born vervet monkeys Chlorocebus aethiops that were supplemented with food along with other interventions, survived for at least six months post-release. Three individuals (19%) died, two killed by predators and one by domestic hunting dogs Canis lupus familiaris. Four individuals (25%) disappeared. One female gave birth to an infant two weeks after release. Supplementary food was provided from feeding stations twice per day for two weeks daily for a further three weeks. Food resembled the diet provided at the rehabilitation centre. Monkeys were introduced as one troop of 16 individuals into vacant habitat with predators. To acclimatize, monkeys spent one day in a release enclosure (49 m2). The release site was nationally protected as a wilderness area. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Reintroduce primates in groups Primate Conservation

A before-and-after trial in 2009-2010 in coastal forest in Ntendeka Wilderness Area, Ngume Forest, South Africa found that 56% of captive, wild-born vervet monkeys Chlorocebus aethiops that were reintroduced as a group along with other interventions, survived for at least six months post-release. Three (19%) individuals were reported dead, two killed by predators and one by domestic hunting dogs Canis lupus familiaris. Four individuals (25%) went missing. One female gave birth two weeks post-release. Monkeys were introduced as one troop of 16 individuals (11 males, 5 females) where sex and age composition of the troop was similar to wild troops. The troop was released into habitat without resident vervets, but with predators. To acclimatize, monkeys spent one day in a release enclosure (49 m2). They were provided supplementary food twice per day for two weeks and once per day for a further three weeks post-release. The release site became a nationally protected wilderness area. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.