Contributions to Zoology, 73 (4) (2004)Thomas Geissmann; Colin P. Groves; Christian Roos: The Tenasserim Lutung, Trachypithecus barbei (Blyth, 1847) (Primates: Cercopithecidae): Description of a live specimen, and a reassessment of phylogenetic affinities, taxonomic history, and distribution

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Pelage characteristics

Figure 1 shows pelage characteristics of the study animal and of other species of the genus Trachypithecus.


Fig. 1. Photographs showing pelage characteristics of (A) the study animal, i.e. Trachypithecus barbei (Bangkok Zoo, Thailand); (B) T. obscurus (Zürich Zoo, Switzerland); (C) T. phayrei crepusculus (Endangered Primate Rescue Center, Cuc Phuong, Vietnam) and (D) T. germaini (Bangkok Zoo). Photographs by TG.

The general color of the study animal is grayish black with no silvering, and only slightly lighter ventrally (Fig. 1a). The tail is dark gray, slightly paler than the body. The root of the tail and the area around the ischial callosities are whitish. The long, upright crown hair forms a distinct crest. The face is gray with a violet tinge. The animal has the whitish eye-rings fully encircling the eyes and a depigmented area on the mouth typical of leaf monkeys of the T. obscurus group.

With the possible exception of some aspects of facial pigmentation, the study animal closely fits the original description of T. barbei (Blyth, 1847) and the coloration of the syntypes of T. barbei (as summarized in Groves, 2001). It differs from T. obscurus (Fig. 1b) in that the legs and the crown are not contrastingly paler than the body. It differs from T. phayrei in the absence of any brownish or buffy pelage. It further differs from T. p. phayrei in the absence of contrastingly light underparts, from T. p. crepusculus (Fig. 1c) in the presence of large white eyerings, and from both T. p. crepusculus and T. p. shanicus in its much darker overall coloration.

It differs from members of the T. cristatus group in exhibiting light face markings (although there can be a lighter gray area round the mouth and eyes in one species, T. germaini), and from T. germaini (Fig. 1d), the only species of the group occurring in Thailand, in the much darker overall coloration and the absence of long, light circumfacial hair.