Stanislaus M. Kivai
Advisor: Dr. Ryne Palombit
My research interests are primate behavior, nutrition, ecology, and conservation.
Currently I am working on the behavioral and dietary implications of food mechanics and nutritional properties of the Tana River mangabey (Cercocebus galeritus), focusing more on juveniles. I would like to understand how these properties constrain the achievement of ecological competence among juveniles and how they overcome the challenges. Further, I am keen to understand whether there is any interaction between the mechanical and nutritional properties that influence the feeding behavior of the Tana River Mangabey. From a conservation perspective, I would like to understand the effects of forest fragmentation on nutritional quality of key plant food species utilized by the mangabey and the possible effects on population growth. I would also like to utilize the knowledge of dietary properties to develop an appropriate habitat restoration program for the endangered Tana primates. Other species on which I have a similar focus are DeBrazza’s monkey and Percival’s black and white colobus monkey in Mathew’s range forest reserve in Kenya.