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New white colour monkeys observed in Sinharaja forest reserve

The primate research team of the Wildlife Conservation Society Galle (WCSG) has carried out research on
Southern Purple Face Leaf Langur (purple-faced leaf monkey).

The Facebook pages of WCSG are reporting that,

Twenty-six troops from rain forests and home gardens around Galle and Matara Districts have been observed during this study. While recording observations, the team found 30 individuals with unusual white colour morph in 14 troops.

The new colour morph was named as the Galanthus colour morph.

Galanthus colour morph was mainly observed among troops mainly from rain forest and rain forest associated habitats. Determination of genetic or taxonomic differences among the sub-species of these monkeys requires molecular and morphological studies.

Wildlife Conservation Society of Galle was established in 1993 in collaboration with the Maritime Museum of Galle. The society is registered in the Central Environmental Authority more via Facebook

The endemic Purple-faced Langur is the commonest larger mammal in Sinharaja Forest Reserve, located in Sabaragamuwa and Southern Provinces of Sri Lanka.

The hilly virgin rainforest, part of the Sri Lanka lowland rain forests ecoregion, was saved from the worst of commercial logging by its inaccessibility, and was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988. It is also a World Heritage Site by UNESCO

According to media reports, the researchers of Wildlife Conservation Society have confirmed that the new colour was not an albino of the common black monkey found in Sinharaja forest reserve.


  1. Ilaya Seran Senguttuvan says:

    Friendship between countries have been enhanced also by the exchange of birds, reptiles and animals unique to different countries. Canada has sqirrels the size of cats in colours black and brown – which will provide much entertaintment value at the Dehiwala Zoo. There is a surfeit of the Geese population there. Sri Lankans, resident in Canada, are reported to have written to our HC in Ottawa to initiate discussions with the Zoological authorities in Toronto in the matter – but this has, unfortunately, not been acted upon yet. A few thousand geese let loose in our lakesides will serve useful purposes in many ways.the same Lankans inform they have had informal discussions with Canadian officials, who are keen to reduce the Geese population there in useful ways. These will go far in the current intense efforts to receive 2 million tourists by 2015 –
    a very reachable goal.


  2. Sam from Vancouver says:

    Introduction of wildlife to their non-native regions can have crippling (or more appropriately – catastrophic) consequences to the resident (or native) plants and animals. Introduction of any such aliens could even sometimes totally destroy local populations and reports on such events are very very common throughout the world especially in islands (since in islands the local fauna and flora have no where to go). When an intruder (e.g. your Canada Geese) become a menace it is call an INVASIVE SPECIES. These invasive species can spread diseases, compete with local species for food, nesting habitat and shelter and in some cases actively predate the local species. Sri Lanka’s plants and animals are already badly suffering form invasive species.

    In the other hand, being a tropical island, Sri Lanka has much more diversity of birds, plants and other biodiversity than those of Canada, since Canada is a temperate/subarctic region.

  3. Dr. RM Gunasinghe says:

    Serious caution must be exercised when introducing foreign species to any country. More important for Sri Lanka at the moment is how we can protect the animals already living here. Such as not letting petty politicians destroy the only known habitat of the above White Langurs, black Leopards and the very few Sinharaja Elephants, by cutting roads through it..

  4. Merlin Van Tweest says:

    You have to be very careful in introducing non-native species to island eco-systems. Australia with its unique flora and fauna has had the introduction of rabbits by the European settlers and since these rabbits did not have a predator they multiplied and caused ecological mayhem at the expense of the native species. Other examples are the introduction of domestic dogs that became wild ‘dingoes’ and the disaster that befell some of the Australian states by the introduction of the South American cane toad.

    Sri Lanka too has unique flora and fauna and any introduction of non-native species could tip the ecological balance. Even our native elephant population is very different from the Indian elephant. Surprisingly I am led to believe by a naturalist friend that the unique Sri Lankan elephant is related to the Sumatran elephant population.

  5. Ilaya Seran Senguttuvan says:

    I am obliged to the well-meaning comments here. My suggestion of the large Squirrels was only to the Zoological Gardens. My suggestions are naturally subject to the Fauna-flora restrictions that apply.

    I might add that almost all of the exhibits in the Zoo are from outside the Island as they are in other zoos. The popular Rice sparrow in the island, I believe, came with the Portugese colonists and remained to multiply and become indigenous. Some years ago, Swans were introduced to the Beira and other lakes here in a plan to beautify our waterways. Canada being ultra-careful re. health standards, their Geese may not, arguably, pose as much a danger as those from opaque sources in the less developed countries.
    But I submit myself to the better judgement here of those who know better and of the introduction of new species here. My object was to generate interest and I now see this has been realised. It is now upto the authorities to make the next moves, if they feel there is some validity here.


  6. PP says:


    Sri Lankan Elephants(Elephas maximus maximus) are the biggest in size of all Asian Elephants.It is unique to SL.

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