Primate Biology Research Programme
Conserving primates and other organisms through new discoveries and disseminating knowledge
The Primate Biology project at the NIFS conducts observational studies on monkeys (primates) in their natural forest habitats. Our main objectives are:
(1) contribute new knowledge to the understanding of the evolution of social behavior in primates (and by extension in humans);
(2) provide a scientific basis for the effective management and conservation of primates and other organisms; and
(3) disseminate new knowledge through scientific publications as well through professionally produced documentary films to not only educate and entertain but also as a method of gaining public support for conservation efforts among local and international communities.
Our scientific work has been buttressed by studies in population genetics, paternity exclusion, epidemiology and physiology as they relate to the behavior, ecology and vital statistics of wild monkeys. In practice, at our study site in Polonnaruwa, we have identified several thousand individual monkeys. New studies focus on the genetic basis for species and subspecies characterization among the gray and purple faced langur populations in Sri Lanka.
Why does this matter ?
Our films contribute positively to the image of Sri Lanka as a tourist destination. The main objective of our work is to promote conservation among the public.