Can the Vervet Monkey and Samango Monkey Hybridise?

The blonde samangos of Cape Vidal were first brought to my attention when reading  Thomas M Butynski and Yvonne A de Jong’s 2009 paper: Three Sykes's Monkey Cercopithecus mitis × Vervet Monkey Chlorocebus pygerythrus Hybrids in Kenya. While some scientists have suggested that these blonde samangos are samango monkey X vervet monkey hybrids, Butynski and de Jong suggest that they are more likely to be erythristic or partially albino. Given our research to date on the alliances formed by vervet monkeys and samango monkeys in the midlands, and noting this phenomenon elsewhere, the feasibility of hybridisation between these two intergeneric species that are remarkably different as far as the amount of chromosomes they have, their behaviour and the different ecological niches they inhabit is never far from my mind. It is important to note that in the unlikely event that hybridisation may occur between these species that are genetically distant, a hybrid would probably be infertile. However, such a phenomenon would offer valuable information about populations.

Allies – Samangos and Vervets

The vervet monkey has a multi-male social system in comparison to the samango monkey’s one male social system hence one reason for the two troops foraging together may be that the multi-male vervet troop brings added protection to the samango troop which consists of adult females, one male and their youngsters.

Samango Monkey Research Project – Update, August 2018

  Dispersing Samango Males - Karkloof and Dargle 23rd July, 2018 Silence saturated the air after Lizzie and I left Mbona Private Nature Reserve’s (http://mbona.co.za/) tranquil, indigenous forest where we’d spent a few hours deep in the forest watching samango monkeys. Turning off Karkloof Road, onto a hazy road, in the direction of Karkloof Canopy … Continue reading Samango Monkey Research Project – Update, August 2018

Methodology

Non-invasive methods will be used to collect data about troop size, sex/age rations, behaviour, and food sources by means of focal or scan ethograms, using wildlife trap cameras, digital photographs and collecting fecal samples . The relatively recent development of non-invasive genetic analysis has allowed primatologists to better understand the population and group dynamics of wild … Continue reading Methodology