A poster of a red-shanked douc langur at a hotel on Son Tra peninsula, a major tourism destination in Da Nang. Photo courtesy of VnExpress
Fifty coffee shops and hotels in Da Nang have put up posters of red-shanked douc langurs for a campaign calling for their protection in the city, which has one of the world’s largest populations of the monkey.
They are also selling 25,000 stickers and bookmarks with pictures of the endangered primate, news website VnExpress reported.
City-based biodiversity conservation NGO Green Viet and Da Nang Young Officials Club are running the campaign to raise awareness among tourists on Son Tra peninsula about protecting the langurs in the area.
The nature conservation center on Son Tra Mountain, which is said to have the largest number of langurs living in the wild, received nearly 500,000 visitors last year.
But their use of motorbikes or cars has been a factor in undermining the ecological balance and the langurs' habitat, the campaign managers said.
The red-shanked douc (Pygathrix nemaeus) is listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as endangered.
The union said the species population has reduced by more than half in the last three generations (30 – 36 years) due to habitat loss and hunting, and the decline is likely to continue for the next 30 – 36 years.
German primate expert Ulrike Streicher, who has spent more than 15 years studying the primates on Son Tra, described them as a “treasure” since they represent the largest such population on earth, but warned they are being threatened by expanding tourism.
She said that only a few populations are left in Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, and that Son Tra Mountain provides them the best habitat due to its peninsular geography and diverse flora and fauna.
The primates were first discovered on the mountain in 1969, and their population has remained at around 200, she said.
BBC broadcast a documentary on the monkeys on the mountain in February last year.
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