Since starting at Chester, Stuart’s main focus has been our Africa programme, coordinating Chester Zoo’s Gashaka Biodiversity Project and working in close partnership with established and new field partners.
Prior to joining the zoo last year, Stuart had spent many years (11 to be exact!) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) leading forest surveys for great apes, okapi and other large mammals in unexplored areas of forest. Whilst in the DRC, Stuart also conducted significant research into the ecology of the Grauer’s gorilla. This research has been the basis from which Stuart has been able to contribute towards important conservation assessments and action plans for this species.
The most recent of these conservation assessments was released on Tuesday (24th November 2015) – ‘The World’s 25 Most Endangered Primates‘.
This publication has been complied by the Primate Specialist Group of IUCN’s Species Survival Commission (SSC), Bristol Zoological Society, the International Primatological Society (IPS), and Conservation International (CI) with contributions from primatologists with extensive field experience such as Stuart.
This publication is updated and circulated every two years with species being added or removed according to their recovery or decline. This year the Grauer’s gorilla has remained in the list of the world’s most endangered primates, along with the new additions to the list; the Philippine tarsier and Lavasoa Mountains dwarf lemur.
“It’s unfortunate that the Grauer’s gorilla has made it onto the list again but hopefully this will continue to draw attention to its’ plight and act as an incentive for further conservation action”