| Ecology & Conservation of the Slender Loris in Kalakad-Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve
The Slender loris is (Loris tardigradus)
is a small, shy, nocturnal primate, and lives in the
forest canopy of the dense rainforests of the Western
Ghats. Very little is known about its population size
and density. However, since the species is arboreal,
it was expected that logging, which fragments its habitat,
might adversely affect its population.
The Mundanthurai plateau, in the Western
Ghats, was originally covered with moist deciduous forest.
It has now been modified into a mosaic of dry forests,
grasslands and plantations. WPSI is carrying out a study
in the Kalakad-Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve to find out
if fragmentation of habitat did, in fact, alter the
way in which the slender loris uses its home range.
The study is focusing on four broad
areas. Firstly, it is examining if the change in habitat
has impacted the size and use of the slender loris’
home range. Secondly, it is assessing whether the changes
in food availability during dry and wet season affects
home range use. Thirdly, it is examining the effects
of home range overlap. Finally, the study is investigating
how the size, type and distances of food patches affect
Kaberi Kar Gupta from Department of
Anthropology, Arizona State University, is carrying
out the project.