We succeeded to establish a conservation centre for the Philippine tarsier in Bilar, Bohol Island, with a huge effort of all people involved and a substantial support of some international organizations. A breeding enclosure is a part of this centre. Philippine tarsier have not been successfully kept and bred in zoos so far. Considering that the wild population is still declining we have attempted to establish a backup breeding colony group in our centre. We got our first pair of tarsiers, male Julius in 2014 and female Nina in 2015. They both do well and seems that are comfortable in our centre which itself is quite a success because tarsiers die very quickly in unsuitable conditions. Breeding of tarsiers is seasonal and it occurs around October. Therefore our animals were joined together at that time. Everything went fine and we observed them mating twice. Nina let us wait for quite a long time. Her pregnancy was revealed during regular weight check at the beginning of this year when she started gaining weight. We were closer to long awaited moment when the first tarsier will be born in our centre. Read more »
Again, we are looking for a highly motivated and enthusiasm field assistant to join our team for minimum 6 months starting in July. Please find more info here.
Few months ago we informed you that our mating attempt was successful, as Julius and Nina copulated twice. Initially, our female did not show any increase in weight, which resulted in a little disappointment. Situation has changed dramatically in March, when we noticed that she had gained few grams, which is already above her average oscillations. Excitement has arisen and during next weighing it was more and more grams. Additionally, our field manager, Filip, has noticed changes in the shape of her belly as well as palpation indicated that she can bear an offspring! This would be a n indisputable accomplishment of efforts of Tarsius Project team. Nina stays under constant observation. Additionally, to minimize risk of failure experienced by previous attempts of breeding the Philippine tarsier, we furnished her enclosure with soft bedding and removed all of the sharp objects.
Based on the available literature on tarsiers, we expect “our first child” in the second half of April. Would it be successful? Time will show, but for now please keep your fingers crossed for the best! Follow our news feed to get informed on this crucial stage of our Project!
Text: Filip Wojciechowski.
It is our pleasure to inform that the Tarsius project got support from Ministry of foreign affairs as a part of Development cooperation for 2016. These funds will be used for improving the tarsier enclosure. The nylon net cover is unsufficient and often destroyed by rats and other intruders. Therefore the whole enclosure complex will be covered by wire mesh in combination with concrete bottoms. We work also on increasing of capacity of our insect stock. So hopefully we will be able to welcome another tarsier pair this year. Thank you!
Educational initiatives on endangered species should not, and are not, restricted to the countries of their occurences. Zoological gardens play big part in those efforts. Most often they have those animals in their collection, which makes education more powerful. Modern zoos should not only conduct educational activities, but also support in-situ projects on different levels, which sometimes could not exists without their help.
Visitors of zoos can read from numerous boards about conservation efforts of scientists and zoos, but most often do not have any idea on struggles which in-situ projects encounter. With this in mind, our field manager, Filip Wojciechowski visited Poznań Zoological Garden, during his visit back home, with a lecture on challenges of in-situ projects in developing countries with focus on Tarsius Project and tarsiers. Interested could hear about differences between in-situ and ex-situ conservation and how they are conducted in the field. Then, based on the Tarsius Project, the aspects of exact work of such initiatives, including all of their aspects as scientific part, logistics, funds, local perspective and collaborations with Filipinos, educational challenges and others were clarified to the audience. Participants had also an unique chance to get tarsiers ecological bags made by local people collaborating with the Project, directly in Subayon. Read more »
Do you want to volunteer for the Tarsius project? Read experiences of Maarten who stayed with us for a couple of weeks.
“My name is Maarten Storm, I’m a 33 year old aquarium technician who loves to travel. In late 2015 I was left with a couple weeks of vacation. Normally I’d take this opportunity to take my backpack and head for some place that cought my attention. However, this time I decided I wanted to give volunteering a try.
When I was on Borneo a couple of years ago I got fascinated by tarsiers. I found out that there were a number of species of tarsiers, one of them being Tarsius syrichta which is endemic to a few islands of the Philipines. I started looking for a volunteer job which specifically involved tarsiers and so I found and read all about “The Tarsius Project” in Bilar Bohol. Read more »
Read The Singular Uniqueness of Tarsiers, an article by our field manager Filip Wojciechowski.
South-East Asia draws the attention of many tourists and travelers because of its rich cultural heritage, globally famous cuisine, and picturesque views. But there are a growing number of people who are starting to shift their attention to the native wildlife of the region, both terrestrial and marine. Among others, nature lovers are attracted to small, forest-dwelling animals with huge eyes, jumping enormously long distances: tarsiers. Those tiny creatures are becoming a mandatory part of the travel itinerary of many visitors. Some of the people find them cute, some of them describe them as aliens from another world. But the question remains, what actually are they?
Are you thinking about unusual Christmas gift? Adopt a tarsier in the Philippines! Julius and Nina are waiting for you in our centre in Bilar. The adoption is symbolic. Your contribution of 4 thousand CZK (150 euro) will be used to achieve goals of the project. As a reward you will receive a certificate, colourful picture of the Philippine Tarsier, video and audio recordings directly from the field.
Find out more about support possibilities here.
The latest edition of ‘Primates in Peril: The world’s 25 most endangered primates’ has been revealed last week. Compiled by the Primate Specialist Group of IUCN’s Species Survival Commission (SSC), Bristol Zoological Society, the International Primatological Society (IPS), and Conservation International (CI), new additions to the list include Philippine tarsier (Tarsius syrichta) and Lavasoa Mountains dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus lavasoensis), both of which are threatened by habitat loss.
“The purpose of our Top 25 list is to highlight those primates most at risk, to attract the attention of the public, to stimulate national governments to do more, and especially to find the resources to implement desperately needed conservation measures,” says Dr Russell Mittermeier, Chair of the IUCN/SSC Primate Specialist Group and Executive Vice Chair of Conservation International. “In particular, we want to encourage governments to commit to desperately needed biodiversity conservation measures.
“This report makes scary reading for primatologists and the public alike, and highlights where we as conservationists must focus our attention over the coming years,” says Dr Schwitzer, Director of Conservation at Bristol Zoological Society and a world-leading primatologist. “However, it also demonstrates the growing importance of collaboration between the international conservation, research and zoo communities in the protection of species and habitats.”
We bring hot news from our first tarsier pair. Nina and Julius mated for the first time. We will see if this breeding attempt was successful. If so, in about half year we can expect a first tarsier baby born in our centre.