Scientific Name: Paragalago rondoensis
IUCN Red List status: Endangered
One of the world’s most endangered primates, Rondo Dwarf Galago are the smallest of all the galago species, weighing just 60g – the same as a tennis ball.
Also known as the Rondo bushbabies, these small primates sport bodies 12.3-13.7cm long capped with large eyes and ears. Their bottlebrush-shaped tail and distinctive ‘double unit rolling call’ distinguishes them from other Dwarf Galagoes.
These nocturnal primates build daytime sleeping nests, commonly found in the canopy.
They often feed on a mixed diet of insects and dried fruit, following ant trails and scavenging close to the forest floor.
They are usually found in moist evergreen forest patches, clinging vertically to branches and leaping into the shrubby understory. It is presumed that they give birth to one or two young per year.
This species is found only in fragments of Tanzania’s coastal forest. Their reliance on this specific habitat, which has been degraded, has diminished their populations – giving them an Endangered classification.
Favouring evergreen forest patches, this species is split into two main population clusters 400km apart, one in southwest Tanzania near the coastal towns of Lindi and Mtawra and the other north – above the Rufiji River in pockets of forest around Dar es Salaam.
Threats and Conservation
The Rondo Galago’s conservation outlook is affected by intense human pressure over their very small and fragmented distribution range: they have only been confirmed at 10 locations across Tanzania, a 30,000-acre stretch of habitats – or half the size of the UK city of Birmingham – all in all. These coastal forest fragments all face ongoing habitat degradation from logging, charcoal manufacture and agricultural expansion.
Starting in 2021 and with support from WLT, Tanzanian conservation body TFCG will seek to create 10 reserves all around one of the last viable homes for the Rondo Galago – the Rondo Forest Reserve of the Lindi District.