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baboons in Spain

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Offline lucy

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« on: January 06, 2010, 11:00 AM »
While posting a photo on Britain Nature of Olive Baboons eating hot potatoes in the snow (http://iberianature.com/britainnature/keeping-warm-in-the-snow/) I came across a reference to baboons living wild in Spain. 

Quote
Until 2001, a free-ranging population of olive baboons could be found in Spain, but they have subsequently been captured and transferred to zoos. This group of Spanish baboons was established when a group of 60 olive baboons escaped from a safari park and began ranging free on a governmental ranch in 1972 (Gil Burmann et al. 2002).

http://pin.primate.wisc.edu/factsheets/entry/olive_baboon

Has anyone heard about this before? 

Offline Dave

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« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2010, 11:15 AM »
Hi Lucy
Not heard about this particular story, but as you know, Wallabies roam free on the South Downs after escaping many years ago from Whipsnade zoo, so I guess this sort of thing happens all over the world, if the escaped animals are able to survive the weather conditions and find food.
Regards
Dave

Offline nick

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« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2010, 12:30 PM »
I saw that great photo too. I seem to remember that they were in the Sierra Nevada?? and were wiped out by a harsh winter...Can anybody correct me on this?


Lucy's post is here: http://iberianature.com/britainnature/keeping-warm-in-the-snow/

« Last Edit: January 10, 2010, 20:17 PM by nick »
Nick
http://iberianature.com/barcelona/history-of-barcelona/spanish-civil-war-tour-in-barcelona/
Spanish Civil War Tours in Barcelona
http://www.iberianature.com/
A guide to the environment, climate, wildlife, & nature of Spain
The Amazon/Forum Bookshop - lend us a hand
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/shop/index.htm
And also now The Natural History of Britain
http://iberianature.com/brita

Offline lucy

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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2010, 19:01 PM »
I finally found some info about the baboon colony of Cadiz.  In 1972 a safari park went bust and apparantly left the animals to their own devices.  The park owners then went after the escaped baboons, and hunted them down.  Some managed to escape being shot, and in 1991 there were 12 of them living free in the cork oak forest – and by 1998 the group had increased to 20.  Primatologists seized the chance to study their behaviour and observed that the group had learnt to feed extensively on pine nuts. 

For various reasons (possible damage to local flora and fauna, unwelcome interference from tourists and locals eg. kidnapping of young baboons) the local government decided the baboons should be captured and put in a zoo.  The three females who eluded them died recently.

Offline nick

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« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2010, 20:10 PM »
Well done Lucy...how did you find out the true story?
Nick
http://iberianature.com/barcelona/history-of-barcelona/spanish-civil-war-tour-in-barcelona/
Spanish Civil War Tours in Barcelona
http://www.iberianature.com/
A guide to the environment, climate, wildlife, & nature of Spain
The Amazon/Forum Bookshop - lend us a hand
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/shop/index.htm
And also now The Natural History of Britain
http://iberianature.com/brita


Offline steveT

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« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2010, 00:04 AM »
There's an extended article about the baboons in a Quercus from the late 90's. I read it but can't remember much.

SteveT