Population studies of Lowe’s Monkey (Mammalia: Primates: Cercopithecidae: Cercopithecus lowei Thomas, 1923) in Kakum Conservation Area, Ghana

Main Article Content

Edward Debrah Wiafe


The status of Lowe’s Monkey Cercopithecus lowei was assessed during a survey in Kakum Conservation Area, Ghana.  Within the reserve logging and hunting was banned 20 years ago, and the forest underwent two decades of natural regeneration.  The main objectives of the study were to evaluate the impact of conservation measures on the local population of Lowe’s Monkey and assess its relationships with other primates and non-primate mammals.  Data on population status were collected during line transect surveys.  Comparing the present mean encounter rate of 1.03 (±0.03) groups/km to that recorded in 1993 (0.31±0.16 groups/km) suggests an average population growth rate of 13.6% per annum.  Conservation measures such as banning illegal logging and hunting have likely contributed to the population increase.  Lowe’s monkeys were often observed in close proximity to other primates (e.g., Black and White Colobus) and non-primate mammals (e.g., Maxwell’s Duiker), but neither socio-positive nor antagonistic interactions were observed.  Recommendations are made for further improvement and studies of the species elsewhere.


Article Details

Author Biography

Edward Debrah Wiafe, Department of Environmental and Natural Resources, Presbyterian University College, P.O. Box 393, Akropong-Akuapem, Ghana

Dr. Edward D. Wiafe is the Dean, Faculty of Development Studies, Presbyterian University, Ghana. He is a member of the IUCN/Species Specialist Group/ African Primates; International Primatological Society and Office holder in IUFRO. At the moment, he is currently working on human-wildlife conflict and food security.



Abedi-Lartey, M. (1999). Survey of endangered endemic primates in Western Ghana. Report to the Wildlife Conservation Society, New York, and the Ghana Game and Wildlife Department, Accra.

Abedi-Lartey, M., & J. Amponsah (1999). Preliminary survey of anthropoid primates in Krokosua Hills Forest Reserve. Unpublished Report to the Protected Areas Development Program and Wildlife Division of the Forestry Commission, Accra, Ghana.

Agyare, A.K. (1995). Socio-economic perspectives of Kakum National Park and Assin Attandanso Resource Reserve. Unpublished Report, Wildlife Department, Accra, Ghana.

Asibey, E.O.A. (1978). Primate conservation in Ghana, pp. 5574. In: Chivers, D.J. & W. Lane-Petter (eds.). Recent Advances in Primatology - Vol. 2. Academic Press, New York.

Booth, A.H. (1956). The distribution of primates in the Gold Coast. Journal of West African Science Association 2: 122–133.

Bourliere, F., C. Hunkeler & M. Bertrand (1970). Ecology and Behaviour of Lowe’s Guenon (Cercopithecus lowei) in Ivory Coast, pp. 297–350. In: Napier, J.R. & P.H. Napier (eds.). Old World Monkeys: Evolution, Systematics and Behaviour. Academic Press, London.

Bourliere, F. (1985). Primate communities: their structure and role in tropical ecosystems. International Journal of Primatology 6 (1): 1–26.

Buckland, S.T., D.R. Anderson, K.P. Burnham, J.L. Laake, D.L. Borchers & L. Thomas (2001). Introduction to Distance Sampling: Estimating Abundance of Biological Populations. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Chapman, C.A., A. Gautier-Hion, J.F. Oates & D.A. Onderdonk (1999). African primate communities: determinants of structure and threats to survival, pp. 1–37. In: Fleagle, J.G., C.H. Janson & K.E. Reed (eds.). Primate Communities. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Curtin, S. (2002). The diet of the Roloway Monkey (Cercopithecus diana roloway), in Bia National Park, Ghana, pp. 351–373. In: Glenn, M.E. & M. Cords (eds.). The Guenons: Diversity and Adaptations in African Monkeys. Kluwer Academic Press, New York.

Danquah, E. (2007). A survey of large mammals of Ankasa and Bia Conservation Areas. Protected Area Development Programme Phase 2 Report, Accra.

Danquah, E., S.K. Oppong, E. Akom, & M. Sam (2012). Preliminary survey of chimpanzees and threatened monkeys in the Bia-Goaso Forest Block in southwestern Ghana. African Primates 7(2): 163–174.

Davies, G. (2002). Primates, pp. 99–120. In: Davies, G. (ed.). African Forest Biodiversity: A Field Survey Manual for Vertebrates. Earthwatch, U.K.

Deschner, T. & D. Kpelle (2003). A Rapid Survey of Primates in Southwestern Ghana. Preliminary Report. Southwestern Ghana R.A.P 2003. Draw River, Boi-Tano, Tano Nimiri, and Krokosua Hills forest reserves, Ghana, West Africa. Conservation International, Washington, D.C.

Galat, G. & A. Galat-Luong (1985). La communauté de Primates diurnes de la foret de Tai, Côte d’Ivoire. Revue de Ecologie (La Terre et la Vie): 40 : 7–32.

Gatti, S. (2010). Community Forest Biodiversity Project: Status of Primate Populations in Protected Areas Targeted under Community Forest Biodiversity Project. Accra, West Africa Primate Conservation Action (WAPCA) and Wildlife Division of Forestry Commission.

Groupe, C. (1991). Méthodes de suivi des populations de chevreuils en forêt de plaine: Exemple: L’indice kilométrique (I.K.). Bulletin Mensuel ONC, Supplément 157, Fiche N 70. Paris, Office National de la Chasse.

Groves, C.P. (2005). Order Primates, pp. 111–184. In: Wilson, D.E. & D.M. Reeder (eds.). Mammal Species of the World. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.

Grubb, P. (1998). Ghana, pp. 1–26. In: Grubb, P., T.S. Jones, A.G. Davies, E. Edberg, E.D. Starin & J.E. Hills (eds.). Mammals of Ghana, Sierra Leone and the Gambia. The Trendrine Press, St Ives, UK.

Grubb, P., T.M. Butynski, J.F. Oates, S.K. Bearder, T.R. Disotell, C.P. Groves & T.T. Struhsaker (2003). Assessment of the Diversity of African Primates. International Journal of Primatology 24(6): 1301–1357.

Hall, J.B. & M.D. Swaine (1981). Distribution and Ecology of Vascular Plants in Tropical Rain Forest. W. Junk Publishers, Den Haag.

Hammer, Ø., D.A.T. Harper & P.D. Ryan (2001). PAST: Paleontological Statistics Software Package for Education and Data Analysis (Version 2.13) Palaeontologia Electronica 4(1): 1–9.

Kingdon, J. (1997). The Kingdon Field Guide to African Mammals. Academic Press, London.

Lernould, J. (1988). Classification and geographical distribution of guenons: a review, pp. 54–78. In: Gautier-Hion, A., F. Bourlière, J. Gautier & J. Kingdon (eds.). A Primate Radiation: Evolutionary Biology of the African Guenons. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Lindsay, M. (1996). Roloway monkey project, Ghana. International Zoo News 43: 300–301.

Martin, C. & E.O.A. Asibey (1979). Effects of Timber Exploitation on Primate Population Distribution in the Bia Rain Forest Area of Ghana. Paper delivered at the 7th Congress of the International Primatological Society. Bangalore, India.

Magnuson, L. (2003). Distribution and abundance of the Roloway Monkey (Cercopithecus diana roloway) and other primate species in Ghana. African Primates 6(1&2): 19–25.

Mensah-Ntiamoah, A.Y. (1989). Pre-feasibility Studies on Wildlife Potentials in the Kakum and Assin Attandanso Forest Reserves. Accra, Department of Game and Wildlife.

National Research Council (NRC) (1981). Techniques for the Study of Primate Population Ecology. National Academy Press, Washington D.C.

Oates, J.F. (1988). The distribution of Cercopithecus monkeys in West African forests, pp. 79–103. In: Gautier-Hion, A., F. Bourlière, J. Gautier & J. Kingdon (eds.). A Primate Radiation: Evolutionary Biology of the African Guenons. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Oates, J.F. (1999). Myth and Reality in the Rainforest: How Conservation Strategies are Failing in West Africa. University of California Press, Berkeley.

Oates, J.F. (2006). Primate conservation in the forest of Western Ghana: field survey results, 2005–2006. Report to the Wildlife Division, Forestry Commission, Accra.

Oates J.F. (2011). Primates of West Africa. In: Mittermeier, R.A. & A.B. Rylands (eds). A Field Guide and Natural History. Conservation International, Arlington, VA, 555pp.

Oates, J.F., M. Abedi-Lartey, M. McGraw, T.T. Struhsaker & G.H. Whitesides (2000). Extinction of a West African Red Colobus. Conservation Biology 14 (5): 1526–1532.

Oates, J.F., S. Gippoliti & C.P. Groves (2008). Cercopithecus campbelli ssp. lowei. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T136931A4350879. Downloaded on 12 February 2016; http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T136931A4350879.en

Paijmans, K. & W.H. Jack (1960). Greater Kakum Forest Reserves. Working Plan presented to the Forestry Department, Ghana. Accra, Forestry Department.

Peres, C.A. (1999). General guidelines for standardizing line-transect surveys of tropical forest primates. Neotropical Primates 7: 11–16.

Struhsaker, T.T. (1993). Ghana’s Forests and Primates. Report of a Field Trip to Bia and Kakum National Parks and Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary in November, 1993. Ghana Game and Wildlife Department, Accra; USAID, Accra; and Conservation International, Washington, DC.

Struhsaker, T.T. (1997). Ecology of an African Rain Forest: Logging in Kibale and the Conflict between Conservation and Exploitation. University Press of Florida, Gainesville.

Struhsaker, T.T. & J.F. Oates (1995). The biodiversity crisis in southwestern Ghana. African Primates 1(1): 5–6.

Whitesides, G.H. & J.F. Oates (1995). Wildlife Surveys in the Rainforest Zone of Ghana. Accra, Ghana Game and Wildlife Department and the World Bank.

Wiafe, E.D., K.B. Dakwa & S. Yeboah (2010). Assemblages of avian communities in Forest Elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis) range in Ghana. Pachyderm 48: 41–47.

Wiafe, E.D. (2013). Status of the Critically Endangered roloway monkey (Cercopithecus diana roloway) in Dadieso Forest Reserve, Ghana. African Primates 8: 9–16.

Wildlife Department, Ghana (1996). Management Plan for Kakum National Park and Assin Attandanso Resource Reserve, Ghana. Unpublished report. Accra, Wildlife Department.