first_imgA study in the northern Republic of Congo found that gorillas and chimpanzees both became scarcer at the onset of logging.However, gorillas move backed into logged areas more readily, while chimpanzees were more likely to stay away.The researchers believe that gorillas are better able to cope with logging because they’re not as territorial as chimps and they seem to be more flexible in their eating habits. As timber companies move into Central Africa’s forests, apes increasingly have to find ways to survive in the altered forests they call home. Scientists still don’t know the full impact of logging on many animals, but now a new study suggests that gorillas stand a better chance of adapting to thinned-out forests than chimpanzees.The research, published Nov. 26 in the journal Biological Conservation, finds that logging initially drives out both western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) and central chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes troglodytes). But later on, the unique ways in which each species reacts leads to a divergence in their responses.“Because gorillas aren’t territorial, they’ll slip right back into those areas and groups will feed relatively close to each other,” Dave Morgan, a biologist with the Lincoln Park Zoo and an author of the study, said in an interview.The researchers found that chimpanzees were less likely to return to logged forests. Photo by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.Chimpanzees, on the other hand, react a bit differently. “They won’t tolerate other communities feeding next to them,” Morgan said. “They’ll go to battle, to the death sometimes.”How apes fare in logging forests was a perplexing question for Morgan and his colleagues, he said, because both chimps and gorillas are intelligent and adaptable animals that have colonized a variety of habitats across Africa.Between 2004 and 2012, researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society and the Goualougo Triangle Ape Project, which Morgan co-directs, counted the number of chimpanzee and gorilla nests along transects through a logging concession in the northern Republic of Congo. They collected data before logging took place, as well as in the midst of the harvests and afterward. The team also noted the proximity of nests and other signs in relation to the apes’ preferred species of trees for food.The Kabo concession where the research took place is Central Africa’s first to be certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. As part of its pact with WCS and the Congolese government signed in the late 1990s, Congolaise Industrielle des Bois, the operating company, inventoried the tree species present. For this study, Morgan and his colleagues used that data to understand what food-providing trees were present and how the changing makeup of the forest influenced where ape species were located.Gorilla nest counts went down when logging began, but they returned to feed on new vegetation growing in logged forests. Photo by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.When logging begins, it brings with it human activity and disruptions such as roads into an area. As a result, the team found that the numbers of both gorilla and chimpanzee nests initially declined. But while chimp numbers stayed low in logged forests, the scientists report that gorillas moved back into recently logged areas as plants in the understory began to come back.“We suspected all along that, because they feed on a lot of these ground herbs, that they’ll do fine in that habitat with that type of undergrowth,” Morgan said. Chimpanzees prefer feeding on fruit, as gorillas do, but they seem to have a tougher time switching to the grasses and other vegetation that sprout after logging occurs. While the company wasn’t targeting fruit trees specifically, Morgan said it’s possible that some were cleared from the forest during road construction or as crews were going after other species.The findings suggest that gorillas are better-positioned to handle the changes to the forest that logging brings — at least to a point. Western lowland gorillas are listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN, while the central sub-species of chimps is Endangered.And changes are coming to the Kabo concession as a second round of logging is slated to conclude by 2020. After that, Morgan said, many of the high-value timber species will be gone, raising questions as to how the company will continue to turn a profit and what changes in their strategy might mean for apes.The researchers postulate that chimps’ territorial nature may make it more difficult for them to return to logged forests. Photo by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.The authors report that companies operating in Kabo worked with the government and conservation groups to limit the impact of logging on the wildlife present in the area, including selectively harvesting trees at specified times and in certain spots so that entire ape habitats weren’t affected all at once. The company also closed roads once they were no longer needed to encourage the regrowth of the forest. But the future of the concession and how it will be exploited isn’t yet clear.Kabo sits south of Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park. Morgan figures that the concession is home to “an awful lot of chimps, gorillas and elephants,” though he and his colleagues are still working out precise numbers for later publication.The authors suggest that strategies to delineate high-priority areas for conservation, including those that have large stockpiles of carbon, could provide alternatives to logging in the future that would also help protect the region’s wildlife. But Morgan said that the pressure will be there to continue logging places like the Kabo concession.“As they exploit a higher diversity of trees” — as occurs in other forests around the world — “what kind of impact that’s going to have on apes?” he asked. “I think that will be a bit more detrimental to them. It’s a concern.”CITATIONMorgan, D., Mundry, R., Sanz, C., Ayina, C. E., Strindberg, S., Lonsdorf, E., & Kühl, H. S. (2017). African apes coexisting with logging: Comparing chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes troglodytes) and gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) resource needs and responses to forestry activities. Biological Conservation.Banner image of a western lowland gorilla at the Limbe Wildlife Center in Cameroon by John C. Cannon.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.Follow John Cannon on Twitter: @johnccannon Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Animals, Apes, Biodiversity, Carbon Conservation, Chimpanzees, Climate Change, Climate Change And Forests, Conservation, Ecology, Elephants, Endangered Species, Environment, Forest Elephants, Forest Stewardship Council, Forestry, Forests, Gorillas, Great Apes, Logging, Mammals, Parks, Primates, Protected Areas, Rainforests, Redd, Redd And Biodiversity, Research, Timber, Tropical Forests, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation center_img Article published by John Cannonlast_img read more