IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis

Red colobus

2nd May, 2024 Environment

Red colobus

Disclaimer: Copyright infringement is not intended.


  • A new study by an international team of scientists has highlighted that conserving Red colobus could hold the keys to protecting Africa’s tropical forests.

Recommendations of the study:

  • Investing in and conserving the red colobus species “could have cascading net positive impacts on African tropical forest health in the face of a growing biodiversity crisis”
  • They called for all red colobus to be provided legal protection and their inclusion as priority conservation species in national laws and international treaties.
  • Other recommendations made included greater investment in the creation and management of protected areas for red colobus monkeys, providing support to and engaging with communities that live in close proximity to these primates, carrying out surveys to estimate the exact populations of these monkeys, and creating awareness about their conservation value.

Red colobus

  • They are primary indicators of biodiversity decline in the continent’s tropical forests.
  • Red colobus monkeys are one of two major simian groups globally. Colobines are primarily leaf-eaters, as compared to the cercopithecines, which are omnivores and thus include animals in their diet as well.
  • Colobines also include the langurs of south and southeast Asia besides Africa’s colobus.
  • Their cognitive abilities are advanced.
  • There are 17 red colobus species or 18 taxa which range from Senegal in the west to the Zanzibar Archipelago in the east.
  • All 18 taxa of red colobus are threatened with extinction, with 14 of them listed as Endangered or Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.


  • Red colobus are among the first mammal species to vanish from African forests due to their large body size and large body providing more meat, the noisy group making them an easy target for hunters, and their curious behavior towards hunters instead of fleeing.




Q) Consider the following statements about the Red colobus monkeys recently seen in the news:

  1. Red colobus monkeys are primarily carnivorous.
  2. All taxa of red colobus are Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.
  3. They serve as primary indicators of biodiversity decline in the tropical forests in the South American continent.

How many of the above statements is/are correct?

A.Only one

B.Only two

C.All three


Ans: D