December 15, 2010

Cryptozoologist of 2010: Ngwe Lwin

Primatologist Ngwe Lwin took this photograph of a new snub-nosed monkey, in early 2010. It had been harvested for food in Myanmar.

Ngwe Lwin, a vigilant young Burmese conservationist, was lucky enough to come across a new species of snub-nosed monkey (photographed above with locals) in the Himalayan Mountains of Myanmar whilst taking part in primate surveys in early 2010. Hunters reported seeing a monkey that had prominent lips and wide, upturned nostrils—features unlike those of any snub-nosed species previously described. Because of its upturned nose, this new Mae Hka snub-nosed monkey (Rhinopithecus strykeri), has the entertaining trait of sneezing when it rains.

Using the cryptozoological method, interviewing hunters, Ngwe Lwin discovered that the species is limited to forests of the Maw River area, approximately 270 km2, with an estimated population of 260-330 individuals, low enough to be classified as Critically Endangered by IUCN’s Red List of Threatened Species.

Ngwe Lwin asking local people for information about the little-known species

Ngwe Lwin demonstrating the use of GPS software

Ngwe Lwin photographing Myanmar snub-nosed monkey body parts on first learning about its existence.

The news of the new monkey was reported on October 26th, 2010, in the American Journal of Primatology. The find was made by biologists from the Myanmar Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association, and primatologists from Fauna and Flora International and the People Resources and Biodiversity Foundation. The new species, a previously unknown type of snub-nosed monkey, was dubbed Rhinopithecus strykeri.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

Filed under CryptoZoo News, Cryptozoologists, Cryptozoology, Top Ten, Year In Review