When biologist and photographer Alexandr Pospech got in touch with ARKive to offer some rare primate images we were understandably excited. During June 2011, Alex explained that he had participated in an expedition and study led by Brent Loken of Ethical Expeditions in the Wehea forest, East Kalimantan, Indonesia. In order to monitor the local wildlife, the team set up camera traps around a newly discovered mineral spring or ‘sepan’, and when checking the images three weeks later they turned up some surprising results.
Dr. Stanislav Lhota confirmed that the team had recorded images of Miller’s grizzled langur, an Endangered subspecies of Hose’s langur. Miller’s grizzled langur is extremely rare and was previously listed as one of the world’s 25 most endangered primates – at one time some people even feared that it may have become extinct. The team’s discovery not only confirmed that a population of Miller’s grizzled langurs remains, it also provided evidence that the subspecies’ range extends further than previously thought.
With the help of his assistant Yatim, Alexandr visited the place several times during following week and was able to build hides in which he spent 3 days in order to observe and photograph the langurs, producing the first ever high quality images of this rare subspecies, which he has kindly contributed to ARKive.
Alexandr told us “I put a lot of energy into my photos with the goal of helping nature conservation. The days spent on photographing these langurs were extremely exhausting. When I came back late in the evening, took care of all the photo equipment and prepared for the next day, there were only about 3 hours left to sleep before setting up to the forest again. When I first saw the langurs in the viewfinder, I knew the effort was worth it. But the task of protecting wildlife all over the World has just started. And everyone can help.”
Make sure you check out Alexandr’s images on ARKive, and read more about his work on his website. You can also read the article produced by the team, which was published earlier this year in the American Journal of Primatology.
Claire Lewis, ARKive Media Researcher