Dr. Graham Banes on Orangutans
Saturday, December 14, 2019
12:30 to 1:30 pm
Kampala Conference Room at the Sacramento Zoo
*Included with zoo admission and free for Sacramento Zoo members. No RSVP needed.
Since June 2019, Dr. Banes is an Associate Scientist in the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center at the University of Wisconsin – Madison, having joined the University in Fall 2017 as a Clinical Assistant Professor in the School of Veterinary Medicine.
Dr. Graham Banes earned his bachelors in zoology at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, following study at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He then read for a Master’s degree in Biological Anthropological Science at Darwin College, University of Cambridge, England, where he inferred the subspecies composition of reintroduced orang-utans at Camp Leakey. He then completed a Ph.D. in Biological Anthropology, also at the University of Cambridge.
To date, he is one of only three Western scientists to earn their PhD wholly from studies of orang-utans at Camp Leakey, after its co-founder, Dr Biruté Galdikas, and Dr Gary Shapiro.
Since 2013, Dr. Banes has worked with 183 zoos across mainland China to assist in welfare, husbandry and management of all great apes. Most recently, he proposed and is Editor-in-Chief (with Carol Sodaro, Megan Fox and Bai Yali) of the Chinese-language Orang-utan Husbandry Manual to which chapters were contributed by zoo professionals across the US and abroad. The Manual was published by the governmental Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens in October 2018, and is the first ever official Chinese-language guide for the care of a non-endemic species.
In the same month, he co-organized and hosted the China National Orang-utan Workshop at Nanjing Hongshan Forest Zoo; the first ever national workshop for a non-endemic species. The Workshop was attended by 70+ staff from 37 Chinese zoos, plus a delegation of seven experts from zoos across the US.
Dr. Banes has been published in numerous valuable scientific publications and is a very sought after speaker at conferences and workshops.
Fascinating research topics include:
• Genetic viability of orang-utans in zoos: is the ‘backup’ population sustainable?
• Genetic causes of chronic respiratory and cardiovascular diseases in great apes
• Wild orang-utan population and conservation status: how many remain on Borneo and Sumatra?
• Subspecies and geographic origins of orang-utans reintroduced into wild populations
• Why do male orang-utans have cheek pads? Male bimaturism and reproductive success
• A search for chemical signals in orang-utans: how and why do cheek pads (not) develop?
• Reproductive parameters of ex-captive and translocated female orang-utans
So stop by Kampala Cafe to grab some lunch and learn how the Sacramento Zoo and YOU are helping to save this endangered species. See you there!
Previous Brown Bag Lunches
The founders of Wild Nature Institute discussed their organization’s efforts in Masai giraffe conservation. They spoke about their goal of Masai giraffe conservation science and its mission to understand where giraffes are doing well and where they are not, and why. The Wild Nature Institute is currently conducting the world’s largest individual-based study of Masai giraffes. They are using pattern-recognition software to track more than 3,000 individuals in a 1,500-square kilometer area to understand births, deaths, and movements in the fragmented Tarangire Ecosystem in northern Tanzania.
In this talk, the Cosumnes River Preserve manager discussed the restoration of priority freshwater wetlands for endangered species at the Cosumnes river preserve and their plan to restore over 100 acres of priority wetlands and oak woodlands on the preserve. This immediately benefits the threatened Giant Garter Snake and the protected Greater Sandhill Crane, as well as many other species of special concern.
This brown bag lunch was about about restoring foothill yellow-legged frog populations to the Feather River. Discussed was how frogs are croaking in record numbers and how this Quarters for Conservation project aids in recovery efforts to avoid extinction. Supporting this project is taking part in positive action to save a native California species and give it legs to thrive and repopulate in the wild. Also discussed was how to spot breeding sites to avoid disturbing eggs. As they say in the frog world, tread water not frogs!
This brown bag lunch talk was with Dr. Gregory Rasmussen of the Painted Dog Research Trust. These social dogs are one of the most endangered carnivore in the world, with approximately 5,000 existing in the wild and one sixth of this population in Zimbabwe. The Painted Dog Research Trust is one of the 2018 Quarters for Conservation projects that your zoo visit supports.
This brown bag lunch was with Sacramento Zoo education specialist Chris Llewellyn. Earlier this year Chris traveled to Africa to participate in the Great Grevy’s Rally. The Grevy’s zebra has suffered one of the most drastic population declines of any African mammal, due to climate change, habitat loss and competition with livestock. The Great Grevy’s Rally is a census of the population, which will aid Grevy’s Zebra Trust and their conservation partners in safeguarding the future of the Grevy’s zebra.
Check out the Zebra Rally webpage as we followed along.
Quarters for Conservation Projects