Dr Susan M Cheyne


My present research is focused on behavioural ecology and conservation of felids, gibbons and red langurs in the peat-swamp forests of Indonesia. Specific projects include ‘Food choice, nutritional composition and behaviour of primates in peat-swamp forest’.

Primates are susceptible to logging due to differences in diet, travel mode, ranging, density, social organisation, morphology and physiology. My research will unravel how these differences affect their ability to survive and recover from logging disturbance. The effects of changes in food-energy availability over the course of the study will be assessed and inferences made on the likely effects of this on the gibbon population. The Sabangau Forest is home to the world’s largest orang-utan population and probably one of the world’s largest Bornean agile gibbon populations, but the long-term safety of these populations is far from guaranteed. The information collected in these studies will be essential in developing effective forest management plans, to assess the viability of populations in adjacent areas outside of Sabangau and thus ultimately, for successful conservation of primates in the area.

As of 2011 I am involved in theBRINCC Expedition as Director of Mammal Studies. This is a new initiative for conservation efforts in the Bornean Highlands.