French-Indonesian International Emerging Action in environment

Dr. Julie Duboscq

Twitter: @MNPTangkoko

Facebook page: @tangkokoconservationeducation

Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle – Musée de l’Homme

Macaca Nigra Project

Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam

Institute Pertanian Bogor


The IEA SULMACGEN (International Emerging Action SULawesi MAcaques GENetics), managed by Dr. Julie Duboscq (CNRS-MNHN-Université de Paris, UMR 7206 – équipe IPE) in collaboration with Macaca Nigra Project will be effective in 2020 and 2021. The Macaca Nigra Project has a triple mission: scientific research, education and conservation. 

Sociality of Sulawesi macaques: revisiting the impact of kinship on social behaviours in wild crested macaques.

Missions and research themes

The objectives of this collaboration are to study of the crested macaques in their natural environment within the established Macaca Nigra Project and to develop a specific study on the feedback loops between social dynamics and genetic relatedness. Macaques share the same social organisation but different social styles. The crested macaques are unique because they are far more social than any other species and their sociality is very dynamic. A pending question about the evolution of such specificity is the impact of kinship on social relationships, at the heart of the costs and benefits of social life.

Main projects of research

Currently, kinship in wild animals rests on noninvasive samples and is assessed through a mixed use of genetic markers and observational pedigree which is unsatisfyingly slow and imprecise. The project thus proposes to develop an advanced protocol to obtain high resolution genetic data through capture-based enrichment genotyping and sequencing. This will generate genomic data of great further application potential. In this specific project, we hope to determine genetic relatedness between individuals more precisely then relate it to sociality in more depth, building up on our long-term research about kinship and social relationships.

institutions and laboratories involved

• Dr. Julie Duboscq is a researcher at CNRS and co-director of MNP. 
• Dr. Hélène Quach is a research engineer at the Musée National d’Histoire Naturelle (MNHN)

• Dr. Muhammad Agil, senior lecturer at Institute Pertanian Bogor (IPB), is involved in the directorship of the Macaca Nigra Project (MNP) since 2006;
• Dr. Dyah Perwitasari Farajallah is a senior lecturer (IPB).

Planned activities

1/ Summer school / training workshop August 2020:
Location: Genomic lab, IPB, Bogor, with potentially an excursion of 4 days in Tangkoko, North Sulawesi, at the field station of MNP
Duration: 4 days in the lab, 4 days in the field. Participants: French and Indonesian researchers, technicians and students
Tentative programme: non-invasive sample collection for genetic analyses, sample processing for genetic analyses, DNA extraction, DNA genotyping, DNA sequencing, DNA sequence analyses, kinship analyses, population genomics, sociality & genetics
2/ Visit of collaborators and partners for discussions about collaborative research August 2020 & August 2021
Location: Jakarta, Bogor, Manado and Tangkoko Duration: 2 weeks. Participants: Julie Duboscq, Hélène Quach, Muhammad Agil
Tentative programme: meeting at the French Embassy with the Attaché de Coopération Scientifique et Technologique and people at the Institut Français Indonesia (IFI) and at the Institut de Recherche et Developpement (IRD), meeting with Prof. Iskandar from the International Office at IPB, meeting with
people at the BKSDA Manado office (Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam – Natural Resources Conservation Center).
3/ Data collection, processing and analyses 2020 & 2021
Location: field station, Tangkoko, and IPB, Bogor. Duration: TBD. Participants: Julie Duboscq, Hélène Quach, Dyah Perwitasari-Farajallah
Tentative programme: TBD.

“Forest with a view: infant backriding on mum while foraging for food”.
Credits: Macaca Nigra Project

“Social session: a small group of crested macaques is grooming and socialising. A female approached an infant with a play face as an invitation to play; the mother threatens her with a soft vocalisation; the two females then exchange lipsmacking for peace-making”.
Credits: Macaca Nigra Project