Africa lacks nothing in terms of its ecological value thanks to its long history as the Earth’s oldest body of land, having stood as the foundation of Pangaea and remaining in place while other continents have shifted and moved across the globe over millions of years. Ancient history has been recorded on its soil, as evident by its rich fossil deposits that show the rise of nonhuman primates and further suggest the origination of modern humans as Africans. The continent itself is stunning and blessed with a variety of habitats from the deserts of the Sahara to the lush tropical rain forests that house a plethora of nonhuman primate species. What primatologist doesn’t dream of the trip of a lifetime to go on safari and witness baboons on the savannahs or a group of gorillas in the mist?
Unfortunately, any discussion of this beautiful continent cannot commence without recognition of the problems facing Africa. Even though every major grouping of primate can be found there, many African nonhuman primates are in danger of becoming extinct as they face severe habitat degradation due to human activity. Negative human activity is affecting the human population as well, as numerous people in Africa face imminent threats each day, from disease, lack of pure drinking water, and civil wars taking millions of lives a year. Conserving human beings in Africa must be a priority in order for animal conservation to be both ethical and attainable. Your support of charitable organizations such as the Red Cross, Action Against Hunger, and Save the Children are invaluable towards preserving both human and nonhuman primates.
Despite recent population losses primarily due to habitat loss, primates historically have been quite successful animals in Africa, spreading throughout the continent and proving to be some of the most intriguing prosimians, monkeys, and apes seen worldwide.