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Primatology webinars in times of COVID-19

Updated: May 30, 2021




What do primatologists do when they are locked down? Well, apparently plenty of webinars, among many other things, for sure. Here is a non-comprehensive list of online panels, presentations and related, performed during the pandemic that has turned our lives upside-down over the last few months. First, there are talks in English, then Spanish and French. Now I also count on the collaboration of Rismayanti, Head Manager of the Macaca Nigra Project, who will be curating the Indonesian section! Finally, there are some talks with Portuguese audio within conferences in English and Spanish. I labelled them accordingly so you can find them. I hope you enjoy the list!





  • Para palestras em português, pesquise [ÁUDIO PORTUGUÊS]. Existem 7 no total.






The African Primatological Society virtual panel on COVID-19

The African Primatological Society hosted a panel that discussed the links between biodiversity loss and the emergence of epidemics and the implications this has for human-wellbeing and African primate conservation. Panelists: Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, Jonah Ratsimbazafy, Bassirou Bonfoh, Sian Waters, Johannes Refisch. Moderated by Inza Koné and Rachel Ikemeh. Rapporteurs: Ekwoge Abwe and Karim Ouattara.


You can watch it HERE. And you can find the follow up HERE







Animal Behavior Society Virtual Meeting, July 28-31, 2020


The virtual ABS meeting gathered hundreds of researchers from all branches of the field for 4 intense days of ethological virtual pride. I listed here those presentations that were later uploaded to Youtube. The abstracts of all presentation on-demand are still available at the website of the conference



















The Association of Indian Primatologists webinar series

The Association of Indian Primatologists has organized interesting talks on primate research and conservation by international experts such as:



















More upcoming webinars on the AIP Youtube channel









Ape Alliance: COVID-19 and Zoonotic Diseases Panel Discussion

The panel discussed how apes could be affected by COVID-19 and how ape tourism might contribute to the transmission of zoonotic diseases. The panellists were: Ian Redmond, James Desmond, Johannes Refisch, Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, Ian Singleton, Vernon Reynolds and Jo Thompson. Moderated by Iona Haines.



(You can also watch it HERE)







BIAZA Research Committee: #virtualzooscience2020

The British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) organized a virtual conference on the 6th of July 2020. Among the talks, a couple dealt with primate research:




You can check the rest of the conference HERE



Bio-Diverse Festival


The Bio-diverse festival took place between the 12th-18th October 2020 and brought together conservationists to talk about their work in an inclusive environment. All talks can be found in their YouTube channel, including:





Hopefully you are also interested in these panel discussions:




CRESIDA seminar series - The University of Roehampton


The Centre for Research in Evolutionary, Social and Inter-Disciplinary Anthropology (CRESIDA) at the University of Roehampton, started an anthropology webinar series which includes, of course, primate research. Check the Anthroehampton blog for updates.





Dysoc/NIMBioS Webinar Series on Cultural Evolution

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) and the The Center for the Dynamics of Social Complexity (Dysoc) has organized a series of webinars on cultural evolution that includes, of course, some dealing with non-human primates:




EFP-GFP 2021 Seminar Series

The European Federation for Primatology (EFP) and the German Primatological Society (GfP) had scheduled a meeting for 2021. Due to the pandemic, has been postponed to 2022. To keep everyone on the loop, they have organized a webinar series in which promising young primatologists from or based in Europe will discuss their work. Talks will be held live every Wednesday during February 2021. You can register here. The schedule is:


Wednesday Feb. 3rd, 2021:

Register Here

  • Charlotte Canteloup - From whom to learn? Social learning biases in wild vervet monkeys


  • Daria Valente - Similarities and differences in lemur vocal behaviour: a comparative approach


  • Dietmar Crailsheim - Assessing the sociability of former pet and entertainment chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) by using a monolayer and a multiplex social network approach



Wednesday Feb. 10th, 2021:


  • Vedrana Šlipogor - Unique, just like everyone else? Integrative approach to the study of personality in common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus)


  • Alex Mielke - Replicability and reproducibility in primate sociality studies


  • Jaimie Morris - Genetic and morphological analyses of historic and contemporary populations of western lowland gorilla: A multidisciplinary approach for the conservation of a critically endangered primate


Wednesday Feb. 17th, 2021:


  • Iván García-Nisa - Investigating the contribution of communication to social learning opportunities in Barbary macaques


  • Cécile Sarabian - From cognition & behavior to infection: primate responses to parasitic threat


  • Pooja Dongre - Immigrants trigger novel food acquisition in a wild primate


Wednesday Feb. 24th, 2021:


  • Eva Gazagne - From the ground to the sky: Habituation, surveys, and areal monitoring technologies in primatological fieldwork


  • Francesca De Petrillo - Ecological variation in primate decision-making


  • Grégoire Boulinguez-Ambroise - Infant-holding: The forgotten behavior in primate developmental and evolutionary studies


Wednesday Feb. 24th, 2021:


  • Eva Gazagne - From the ground to the sky: Habituation, surveys, and areal monitoring technologies in primatological fieldwork


  • Francesca De Petrillo - Ecological variation in primate decision-making


  • Grégoire Boulinguez-Ambroise - Infant-holding: The forgotten behavior in primate developmental and evolutionary studies



FINE Seminar series

The International Remote Seminar on Frontiers in Social Evolution (FINE) organizes seminars on Tuesdays (11:00 in New York/17:00 in Paris) which can be attended via Zoom or YouTube. Here are the seminars dealing with primates:









Habitat Expert Series Webforums

The Habitat Foundation, a conservation trust based in Penang, Malaysia, has organized a series of webforums over the last months focusing on biodiversity and conservation in Malaysia. They teamed up with the Malaysian Primatological Society (MPS) to organize a forum the 28th of July on "A Future for Primates in Malaysia", where five experts discussed their work:


  • Peter Ong of the Project Monyet talked about his goal of photographing all 25 primate species living in Malaysia


  • Felicity Oram of PONGO Alliance explained the efforts being taken in the Kinabatangan to ensure long-term viability for the orangutan


  • Nadine Rupert of the Malaysian Primatological Society shared an overview of the challenges faced by primates in Malaysia, focusing on her research on southern pig-tailed macaques living in oil palm plantations in Perak


  • Sharmini Julita Paramasivam, founder of the Animal Neighbours project, spoke about the long-tailed macaque, and the management strategies to ameliorate human-macaque conflicts in urban Malaysia


  • Jo Leen Yap, founder of Langur Project Penang provided an in-depth view of the conservation efforts for dusky langurs and other arboreal species in Penang.


  • Hani Nabilia of PERHILITAN, spoke about the laws and regulations which surround primate conservation in Malaysia




(You can also watch it HERE, and enjoy more material of Habitat Foudation HERE)



IUCN Primate Specialist Group Section for Human Primate Interactions:


Cercopithecines, people and Covid-19

This webinar brought together experts on different types of interactions between primates and humans to discuss how the pandemic could affect such relationships. It was organized by Siân Waters, Susan M Cheyne & Malene Friis Hansen and the presenters were:


  • Thomas Gillespie – What are the risks and how can we mitigate COVID-19 for Cercopithecines and people in shared environments?


  • Lauren Gilhooly – Fewer people, fewer problems? How changes in tourism can affect macaque behaviour


  • Malene Friis Hansen & Ventie Angelia Nawangsari, – Creating demand, then cutting supply: A case study of macaque provisioning in real-time.


  • Tanvir Ahmed – Human-Primate Conflicts in Bangladesh during the COVID-19 Pandemic


  • Magdalena Bermejo – Ape Case Studies and Human Interactions: Can people-primate interactions change during and after an epidemic?



(You can also watch it HERE)




Decolonising Primate Conservation

Streamed the 10th August 2020, this webinar was organized by Siân Waters and Susan M Cheyne. The speakers were:


  • Seheno Corduant-Andriantsaralaza - How decolonization in conservation and inclusivity in research can improve conservation efforts and initiatives in Madagascar?


  • June Mary Rubis - Seeing the utan for the orang: a decolonial Indigenous approach to orang utan conservation in Sarawak





(You can also watch it HERE)





The Role of Belief Systems in African Primate Conservation


Streamed the 20th October 2020, this webinar was organized by Siân Waters, Lynne R.Baker, and Susan M Cheyne. The speakers were:


  • Carolyn A. Jost Robinson - Beyond believing. Conceptualizing diverse forms of knowledge in conservation practice


  • Christopher Dankwah - The nexus of Indigenous cultures and primate havens; insights from Ghana


  • Sherrie Alexander - The role of religion in primate conservation: Muslim perceptions of Barbary macaques in the Rif mountains of Morocco


  • Sery Gonedele Bi - Contribution of taboos to the conservation of Geoffroy's black-and-white colobus in two distinct traditional communities in Côte d'Ivoire


  • Lynne R.Baker - Local belief systems and the conservation of Sclater's monkey in Nigeria



(You can also watch it HERE)






Leakey Foundation Lunch Break Science Series

The Leakey Foundation has recently started a series of webinars led by anthropologists from different areas, including: