Managing The Green Monkey Population

Singe Vert - Green Monkey
Singe Vert - Green Monkey

Action PA6

  • Implement managements actions on stray species, invasive exotic species or their impacts

How many individuals are in the population of green monkeys in Saint Martin? The first report dates back at least 20 years and they have continued to multiply, especially close to urban zones on the Dutch side of the island, near residents of Guana Bay, Pointe Blanche, and Cole Bay. Hurricane Irma increased their dissemination, and they can now be seen throughout the French side from the Lowlands to Anse Marcel. This apparent recrudescence naturally has had an impact on local residents, crops, and our unique island biodiversity. So much so that there is a possibility of updating the regulations concerning this invasive species, as discussed on January 18, 2023 during a meeting at the Prefecture with the DEAL, the Réserve Naturelle, the Nature Foundation of Sint Maarten, the Regional Health Agency, and the Collectivité. The goal would be to improve regulations to manage the population of these primates. The island of Saint Kitts, invaded by green monkeys, has seen its agricultural economy severely impacted for several years, and has long invested in various actions on different levels, yet has not succeeded in resolving the issue due to a lack of rapid action.

In early 2023, the government of Sint Maarten made the decision to euthanize 450 of these animals before 2025, and tasked the Sint Maarten Nature Foundation with the job. A dedicated staff member was assigned to build cages, place them in specified locations, add bait, and finally transport the animal to the veterinarian to be euthanized.

The Réserve Naturelle has discussed the problem with an advisory committee since 2015, at which time the green monkeys were not as present in Saint Martin, but a decision must be made now. Invasive species are the main cause of the disappearance of global biodiversity. In this light, the management’s role is to prevent the introduction of these species and to control those already present within the reserve. The DEAL has been asked to contribute to finding sustainable management solutions for the green monkeys in Saint Martin, in order to coordinate with Sint Maarten. These solutions should help define an adapted approach and estimate the human and financial resources necessary for this struggle, which will be financed by the government.

Green monkeys live in groups of 10 to 80 individuals on a space of approximately two square kilometers. A single adult weighs about 8 kilos with a height of 50 centimeters, and can live up to 13 years. Gestation lasts five and a half months and the female only carries one baby at a time. An opportunistic omnivore, this animal is originally from sub-Saharan Africa, and consumes fruits, vegetables, leaves, insects, lizards, and eggs, based on what it finds in its immediate area. Green
Singe Vert - Green Monkey
Singe Vert - Green Monkey

All articles from: Newsletter-43

Understanding and continual study of the natural heritage

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