Recent News

June 2021: Dr. Karen Strier is a panelist for the Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation webinar on “Modern Human Society as seen by Primatologists” with Dr. Juichi Yamagiwa.

March 2021: Strier lab member Jacob Kraus was briefly interviewed in a recent episode of Travelogue: Exploring Hidden China. The episode documents some of the ecotourism, conservation, and educational activities surrounding black-and-white snub-nosed monkeys (Rhinopithecus bieti) in the Baima Snow Mountain Nature Reserve, where Jacob conducts his field research. Jacob appears in the video at the 20:25 mark.

November 2020: Dr. Karen Strier receives Prêmio Muriqui for the Reserva da Biosfera da Mata Atlântica (considered one of top conservation awards in Brazil).

October 2020: Dr. Karen Strier presents “Implications of social evolution and behavioral flexibility for primate conservation and management” at the Seminar on Frontiers in Social Evolution.

May 2020: Dr. Karen Strier receives a Recognition Award by Operação Primatas in Brazil.

May 2020: Both Dr. Karen Strier and lab member Irene Duch-Latorre are featured in the Art of Discovery supplement of the Wisconsin State Journal on Sunday, May 3, 2020. A photo showing Dr. Karen Strier at her field site in Brasil, by João Marcos Rosa, and two photos by Irene Duch-Latorre, illustrate the supplement along with other photos by UW-Madison scholar and researchers.

Dr. Karen Strier in a canopy tower at her field site, Reserva Particular Patrimonio Natural – Feliciano Miguel Abdala
Department of Anthropology Vilas Research Professor Karen Strier surveys the forest for muriqui monkeys at her long-term study site on a protected reserve in southeastern Brazil near the city of Caratinga, in the state of Minas Gerais. For 38 years, she has studied the species and its flexible behavior in response to demographic changes. Strier is one of the researchers featured in National Geographic Brazil’s Women in Conservation project. Photo by João Marcos Rosa.

February 22, 2020: Karen Strier is one of the “Mulheres na Conservação” —women in conservation— in National Geographic Brasil. Como esta cientista trabalha para reabilitar o maior e mais raro macaco das Américas

October 10, 2019: World’s top 25 most endangered primates report released. Karen Strier is quoted at the end of the article:

“This report helps us to focus on the plight of ALL primates whose futures are in danger. There is still time to take actions to save the most critically endangered primates from extinction and to protect other species from the increasing risks posed by human activities and global climate change.  Their problems are our problems insuring their survival increases our own chances as well.”

April 15, 2019: Karen Strier is featured on the podcast “People Behind the Science”, episode 497: “Dr. Karen Strier: Protecting the World’s Most Peaceful Primates”, available for listening and sharing at itunes and the PBtScience podcast’s website. If you would like to learn more about People Behind the Science, follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

July 5, 2018: Brazilian forests fall silent as yellow fever decimates threatened monkeys, Scientific American

December 13, 2017: Coverage of a recent publication in PLOSone, authored by Karen B. Strier & colleagues, assessing what data are needed in order to conserve the endangered muriqui monkeys.

June 6, 2017: Após o surto de febre amarela, população de bugios fica reduzida a menos de 3% em reserva de MG (After yellow fever outbreak, population of howler monkeys reduced to less than 3% at reserve in Minas Gerais), O Globo.

May 15, 2017: Le muriqui, fascinant singe hippie (The muriqui, fascinating hippie monkey), Le Monde.

May 13, 2017: Karen Strier interviewed on The PrimateCast about her long term research with the muriquis as well as education, outreach, and service to the field of primatology (audio: 15 mins 21 secs).

May 2, 2017: Karen Strier quoted in the New York Times regarding the yellow fever outbreak and howler monkey population collapse in Minas Gerais, Brazil.

March 27, 2017: Yellow fever is killing howler monkeys in Brazil, Mongabey

March 21, 2017: Hug-loving ‘hippie’ monkeys left alone in forest as epidemic kills other primates, Seeker

March 21, 2017: Yellow fever killing thousands of monkeys in Brazil, the University of Wisconsin-Madison

2016 and earlier

October 2016: Karen Strier was elected as President of the International Primatological Society, 2016-2020.

June 2016: Karen Strier led a webinar from the Atlantic Forest presented by WINGS Worldquest discussing her research and conservation work with the muriquis. WINGS Worldquest Flag Carrier Report now online here.

June 2016: The muriquis and Karen Strier were featured in the documentary on climate change, “Time to Choose,” by Academy Award winner Charles Ferguson.

October 2015: The Muriqui: Brazil’s critically endangered “hippie monkey” hangs tough, Mongabay

July 2015: Monkeys to the Rescue: A group of monkeys bands together to protect a fellow primate – a human researcher, Discover Magazine

April 2015: Reserva para proteger macaco atrai também onça em Minas; Veja foto e vídeo (Reserve to protect monkeys also attracts jaguars in Minas; view photo and video), Matheus Leitão

March 2015: Primates’ behavior, ecology give hints to their survival, Wisconsin State Journal

August 2014: Amor à floresta atravessa gerações e salva o maior macaco das Américas (Love of the forest spans generations and also helps save the largest monkey in the Americas), Brazilian TV Globo Reporter

September 2013: Humans would be better off if they monkeyed around like the muriquis, Smithsonian Magazine

June 2013:  Karen Strier was made an honorary citizen of Caratinga, Minas Gerais:

November 2012: Endangered muriqui monkeys in Brazil full of surprises, Mongabay

September 2012: População de macacos ameaçados de extinção cresce cinco vezes em reserva (Population of endangered monkeys grows five times in reserve), Veja Magazine

December 2011: As matriarcas da floresta (Matriarchs of the forest), Revista Pesquisa FAPESP

Recent News

May 2021: Dinsmore, M.P., Strier, K.B., and Louis, E.E. 2021. Anthropogenic Disturbances and Deforestation of Northern Sportive Lemur (Lepilemur septentrionalis) Habitat at Montagne des Français, Madagascar. Primate Conservation 35;1-14. Website:

The article: “Citizen Science for Monitoring Primates in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest: Preliminary Results from a Critical Conservation Tool” – Marcello S. Nery, Roberto P. Pereira, Fernanda P. Tabacow, Fabiano R. de Melo, Sérgio L. Mendes and Karen B. Strier has been posted, open access on the IUCN SSC Primate Specialist Group website: It will be published later this year in issue number 35 (2021) of the journal Primate Conservation.

March 2021: Strier Lab member Irene Duch-Latorre has successfully passed her preliminary examination and has fulfilled the necessary requirements to become a dissertator.

July 2020: Irene Duch-Latorre has received her M.S. degree in Anthropology.

May 2020: Strier Lab member Irene Duch-Latorre has successfully passed her qualifying examination and has fulfilled the necessary requirements to proceed in the Ph.D. program.

April 2020: Mary Dinsmore successfully defended her dissertation (remotely) on “The impacts of anthropogenic and natural disturbances on the behavior and habitat of northern sportive lemurs (Lepilemur septentrionalis) at Montagne des Français, Madagascar”.

Mary Dinsmore defends dissertation remotely

March 2020: The Strier lab hosts Dr. Christopher Schmitt, an assistant professor at Boston University. He also gave a talk on “Modeling the Evolutionary Origins of Obesity: Progress and Prospects in the Vervet Monkey, Chlorocebus spp.”.

February 2020: Dr. Yaya Rayadin from Mulawarman University and ECOSITROP, with his collaborators Sugiono Hanggito, a Master’s student at University of Texas-El Paso, and Dr. Stephanie Spehar, an associate professor at University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, visited the Strier lab. Dr. Richard McFarland and some of his graduate students, and Gisela Sobral, also joined us to welcome the orangutan specialists. Dr. Rayadin graciously presented his work on Northeast Bornean orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus morio) in multifunctional landscapes.

Strier lab members and colleagues during Dr. Rayadin visit (left to right: Jacob Kraus, Dr. Richard McFarland, Mary Dinsmore, Ilianna Anise, Irene Duch-Latorre, Alexandra Steffeck, Sugiono Hanggito, Gisela Sobral, Christine Grebe, Dr. Karen Strier, Dr. Stephanie Spehar, and Dr. Yaya Rayadin)

Strier lab members and colleagues during Dr. Rayadin visit (left to right: Ilianna Anise, Irene Duch-Latorre, Jacob Kraus, Christine Grebe, Dr. Karen Strier, Alexandra Steffeck, Sugiono Hanggito, Dr. Stephanie Spehar, Gisela Sobral, Mary Dinsmore, Dr. Yaya Rayadin)

January 2020: Strier lab member Irene Duch-Latorre, along with her advisors and her collaborators, has received donated equipment from IDEA WILD and has also been awarded a Student Research Grants Competition Research Travel Award for her project on the brown-headed spider monkey (Ateles fusciceps fusciceps) in Ecuador.

December 2019: Strier lab members celebrate the end of the fall semester.

Members of the Strier Lab at a table in a restaurant

Dinsmore, M.P., Anise, I.E., Ellis, R.J., Hardie, A.J., Kraus, J.B., and Strier, K.B. 2019. Primate Conservation. In Shook, B., Nelson, K., Aguilera, K., and Braff, A. (eds): Explorations: An Open Invitation to Biological Anthropology

Strier Lab member Jacob Kraus has successfully passed his preliminary examination and has fulfilled the necessary requirements to become a dissertator.

November 2019: Karen Strier has coauthored a new publication on muriqui phylogeography: Chaves, PB, Magnus, T, Jerusalinsky, L, Talebi, M, Strier, KB, Breves, P, Tabacow, F, Teixeira, RHF, Moreira, L., Hack, ROE, Milagres, A, Pissinatti, A, de Melo, FR, Pessutti, C, Mendes, SL, Margarido, TC, FAgundes, V, Di Fiore, A, and Bonatto, SL. Phylogeographic evidence for two species of muriqui (genus Brachyteles). Am J Primatol. 2019;e23066.

Strier, KB.  2019. Everything for the muriquis: reflections from a long-term field study on a critically endangered primate.  Boletim da Sociedade Brasileira de Mastozoologia, 85;117-127.

October 2019: Strier lab members Ilianna Anise,  Mary Dinsmore, Irene Duch Latorre, and Jacob Kraus attended the 2019 Midwest Primate Interest Group meeting held at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois.

Members of the Strier Lab standing by a sign for the Midwestern Primate Interest Group Conference.

September 2019: Strier lab member Rebekah Ellis has successfully passed her qualifying examination and has fulfilled the necessary requirements to obtain a Masters degree in the Department of Anthropology.

August 2019: Strier lab member Mary Dinsmore spent a few weeks this summer teaching a study abroad course with the company, Broadreach. The course, Sea Turtles and Dolphin Studies of the Mediterranean, spent time in the south of Italy and Greece. Highlights included conducting a necropsy on a loggerhead sea turtle, conducting dolphin surveys and recording vocalizations on Stripped and Risso’s dolphins, and participating in turtle nest surveys in Crete!

Students stand at the bow of a ship overlooking the ocean

Jacob Kraus has recently returned from Baimaxueshan Nature Reserve, China, where he collected pilot data on the behavioral thermoregulation of black-and-white snub-nosed monkeys (Rhinopithecus bieti) in preparation for his PhD dissertation. Jacob’s research will be conducted in collaboration with the Institute of Eastern-Himalaya Biodiversity Research, led by Dr. Xiao Wen, at Dali University.

Jacob Kraus and a colleague stand on a trail to collect data.Jacob Kraus stands with a colleague in China.

Irene Duch Latorre conducted a pilot study for her project on the brown-headed spider monkey (Ateles fusciceps fusciceps) at the forest Río de Oro (Ecuador).  Along with her collaborators, including an interdisciplinary team of field assistants, parabotanists, and local guides, she censused the primate community, gathered baseline information on the mammal and flora diversity, and started raising conservation awareness. Irene also delivered a talk on the conservation of the brown headed-spider monkey at the Sustainable Management of Biodiversity Symposium in Bahía de Caraquez, Ecuador.

Irene Duch Latorre and her local guide stand in front of a marked tree.Irene Duch Latorre gives a presentation to a group of students.

Photos by Alejandra Niño-Reyes

August 2019: Dr. Karen Strier delivered the keynote address, “Primates and Conservation  in the Time of Yellow Fever”, at the 42nd annual conference of the American Society of Primatologists.

Dr. Strier stands on the stage and gives a talk in front of an audience at the annual ASP's.

Dr. Strier was also a collaborator on several other  podium/poster presentations and workshops at the conference including:

“Male reproductive skew in male ateline primates” – A. Di Fiore, L. A. Abondano, K. M. Ellis, P. B. Chaves, A. Link, K. B. Strier.

Sustaining Long-Term Commitments in Primate Research and Conservation – M. A. Norconk, J. P. Capitanio, P. A. Garber, L. A. Isbell, S. J. Schapiro and K. B. Strier. (Workshop)

“Rate of emission and social relevance of northern muriqui (Brachyteles hypoxanthus) sequential calls” – F. D. Mendes, C. Ades, D. Demolin, C. T. Snowdon, K. B. Strier.

“Decline of a primate community following a yellow fever outbreak in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest” – C. B. Possamai, S. L. Mendes, K. B. Strier.

“Fidelity in home range use over time in northern muriquis” – M. Lima, S. L. Mendes, K. B. Strier. (Poster.)

Ph.D. Candidate, Mary Dinsmore presented a podium presentation entitled, “Anthropogenic disturbances and deforestation of northern sportive lemur (Lepilemur septentrionalis) habitat at Montagne de Francais, Madagascar” at the 42nd annual conference of the American Society of Primatologists. Collaborators of this presentation are K. B. Strier and E. E. Louis Jr.

Mary Dinsmore stands and gives a talk at the ASP meeting.

July 2019: We are happy to share Early View of a new muriqui publication:Lima, M., Mendes, S.L., and Strier, K.B. 2019. Habitat use in a population of the northern muriqui (Brachyteles hypoxanthus).  International Journal of Primatology.

Read at

May 2019: Amanda Hardie, Jacob Kraus, and Irene Duch Latorre were awarded Student Research Grant Competition funds from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Graduate School.

April 2019: Irene Duch Latorre’s photo of pygmy marmosets was selected as a winner in the Cool Science 2019 photo contest held by the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The winning photo is pictured below.

A photo of grooming pygmy marmosets

April 2019: Jacob Kraus was awarded a Graduate Summer Research Award with the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

April 2019: Ilianna Anise was awarded a William C. Burns and Lemuel A. Fraser Teaching Enrichment Scholarship from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

February 2019: Jacob Kraus and Ilianna Anise successfully passed their qualifying examinations in the Department of Integrated Biology.

February 2019: Amanda Hardie was elected as the student member of the Biological Anthropology Section (BAS) of the American Anthropological Association (AAA).

January 2019: Lab member Irene Duch Latorre, along with her co-PIs, Felipe Alfonso-Cortés, Stella de la Torre, and Karen B. Strier,  received a Primate Action Fund Grant from Global Wildlife Conservation and the Margot Marsh Biodiversity Foundation for their project, “First assessment of the brown-headed spider monkey, Ateles fusciceps fusciceps, in the forest fragment Río de Oro, Ecuador”.

January 2019: Lab member Amanda Hardie observing howler monkeys for her PhD dissertation at the RPPN Feliciano Miguel Abdala. Photo taken by our collaborator, Sérgio L. Mendes, during his and Karen’s recent visit.  For a few more photos from the field, see:

Amanda Hardie uses binoculars to look up into the canopy while observing howler monkeys.

October 2018: Dr. Karen B. Strier and Dr. Toni E. Ziegler published a commentary, “From the field to the lab: Muriqui endocrinology from a collaborative perspective”, in the American Journal of Primatology. 

October 2018: Jacob Kraus and Irene Duch Latorre presented their research at the 2018 Annual Conference for the Midwest Primate Interest Group (MPIG). Jacob gave a podium presentation entitled, “Energetics of Old World monkeys at high altitudes: from geladas to snub-nosed monkeys”. Irene presented a poster entitled, “Mapping Ecuadorian mantled howler monkey (Alouatta palliata aequatorialis) in Western Ecuador for conservation”.

Jacob Kraus presents his talk at the 2018 conference for MPIG.Irene Duch Latorre stands in front of her poster for the 2018 MPIG conference.Part of the lab(left to right: Jacob Kraus, Irene Duch Latorre, Bekah Ellis, Ilianna Anise) stand in front of the welcome sign at the 2018 MPIG conference.

October 2018: Jacob Kraus received the John Jefferson Davis travel award to present his research on the energetics of Old World monkeys at high altitudes at the  2018 Midwest Primate Interest Group meeting held at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.

August 2018: Karen Strier, president of the International Primatological Society (IPS), presented several talks at the bi-yearly IPS conference in Nairobi, Kenya at the United Nations. Lab member Mary Dinsmore also presented her research titled, “The impacts of Cyclone Enawo and anthropogenic disturbances on the behavior of northern sportive lemurs (Lepilemur septentrionalis) at Montagne de Français, Madagascar”.

Dr. Strier gives a podium presentation at IPS 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya IPS members, including President, Dr. Karen Strier, host a panel. Mary Dinsmore gives a podium presentation at IPS 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya.

August 2018: Karen Strier is the first recipient of the Ai’s Scarf Award that started in 2018:  The Ai ‘s Scarf Award is for celebrating the female scholars who dedicate their lives to promoting the research, conservation, and welfare of chimpanzees and the rest of the nonhuman primates. The scarf was created in 2017 for the 40th anniversary of the Ai project, and is based on the painting by the chimpanzee Ai.

Smiling man and woman holding up painted scarf
Karen Strier receiving the first Ai Scarf Award from Dr. Tetsuro Matsuzawa, Professor and General Director of the Japan Monkey Centre and past president of the IPS, representing the Ai Scarf Award Committee, at the IPS meeting in Nairobi, Kenya.

May 2018: Jacob Kraus was awarded a William C. Burns and Lemuel A. Fraser Teaching Enrichment Scholarship from the University of Wisconsin – Madison

May 2018: Ilianna Anise and Jacob Kraus both received Graduate Summer Research Awards with the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

August 2018 – May 2019: Rebekah Ellis was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship through the Latin America, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

April 2018: Amanda Hardie was awarded an Early Career Grant from the National Geographic Society for her dissertation project, “The Behavior and Ecology of Brown Howler Monkeys (Alouatta guariba clamitans) in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest.”

April 2018: Dr. Karen B. Strier and Ph.D. candidate Mary Dinsmore both presented work at the annual American Association of Physical Anthropology conference in Austin, Texas. Dr. Strier discussed the impacts of climate change on primates and primatology while Mary shared her findings on the impacts of Cyclone Enawo on the habitat of the northern sportive lemur.

February 2018: Dr. Katie Hinde visited the Strier lab during a recent trip to the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Members of the Strier Lab with Dr. Katie Hinde

December 2017: Amanda Hardie received funding from the Graduate School at the University of Wisconsin – Madison as well as the Department of Anthropology for travel for her dissertation research, “The Behavioral Ecology of Brown Howler Monkeys (Alouatta guariba clamitans) in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest”.

October 2017: Strier lab and friends attended the 2017 Midwest Primate Interest Group (MPIG) conference at Northwestern University in Chicago. PhD candidates Mary Dinsmore and Amanda Hardie, as well as visiting scholar Dr. Peng Zhang presented their research while there.

Strier lab and friends at dinner while in Chicago for the MPIG conferenceMary Dinsmore presents her research at MPIG conference

Amanda Hardie presenting at MPIG conferenceDr. Peng presenting at MPIG conference

May 2017: Amanda Hardie received the Robert J. Miller prize in Anthropology from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin to support travel to the Buffalo Zoo in Buffalo, NY for her project, “A preliminary validation of urinary C-peptide analysis in captive black-and-gold howler monkeys (Alouatta caraya).”

April 2017: Karen Strier (PI) with Sergio Mendes (participant), Carla Possamai (participant) and Amanda Hardie (participant) were awarded funding from the National Geography Society for the proposal, “Population Assessment and Conservation Status of a Primate Community Following a Major Yellow Fever Outbreak in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest.”

March 2017: Karen Strier, with Carla Possamai and Sergio Mendes, received a Primate Action Fund grant for their proposal, “Population Assessment and Conservation Status of the Brown Howler Monkey (Alouatta guariba) following a Major Yellow Fever Outbreak in an Atlantic Forest Reserve (RPPN-Feliciano Miguel Abdala), Caratinga, Minas Gerais, Brazil.”

January 2017: Mary Dinsmore was awarded a Primate Action Fund grant for her proposal, “The influence of anthropogenic activities on behavior of the northern sportive lemur (Lepilemur septentrionalis): implications for conservation.”

2016 and earlier

September 2016: Mary Dinsmore was awarded a grant from Conservation International’s Primate Action Fund and Margot Marsh Biodiversity Foundation for her proposal, “Assessment of Anthropogenic Activities and Their Potential to Influence Behavior and Range in the Northern Sportive Lemur (Lepilemur septentrionalis) at Montagne des Français, Madagascar.”

August 2016 – May 2017: Amanda Hardie was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship through the Latin America, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.