Rediscovering the Horton Plains Slender Loris
As part of the ongoing red slender loris project in Sri Lanka, the research team has rediscovered the virtually unknown Horton Plains slender loris.
Originally documented in 1937, it had only been encountered four times in the past 72 years. The Horton Plains slender loris is evidently extremely rare and was found only after more than 200 hours of nocturnal transect surveys in the known habitat.
The rediscovery and capture by the team – working under ZSL’s EDGE of Existence programme – resulted in the first detailed physical examination of this subspecies, which clearly demonstrates adaptations to montane forest with short limbs and long dense fur. Confirmation of its continued existence raises familiar concerns over its taxonomic distinctiveness and apparent low abundance in a highly fragmented
and diminishing habitat. An ongoing research, conservation and management programme will incorporate the findings to ensure that adequate effort is focused on describing the extent of occupancy of the Horton Plains slender loris so that necessary recommendations for threat-reducing management may be delivered.