Abstract # 205:

Scheduled for Monday, September 21, 2009 11:30 AM-11:40 AM: Session 20 (Del Mar Room) Oral Presentation


S. Evans1, C. Wolovich1 and J. Herrera1,2
1DuMond Conservancy, Miami, Fl, USA, 2University of Miami, Miami, Fl, USA

Owl monkeys are monogamous, territorial and live in family groups. The DuMond Conservancy houses owl monkeys in outdoor cages in a wooded habitat in subtropical South Florida. Over the past 18 years we have maintained 30 pairs and 15 families of Aotus nancymaae, A. azarai and A. lemurinus. Our families have been as large as six with offspring almost six years old. Aggression is seldom observed in our social groups except when unfamiliar males and females are initially paired. Aggression necessitated separating the male and female on five occasions [17% of pairings] and one severe fight resulted in the death of a female. Severe fights also occurred in five families and an additional three aggressive interactions were observed, two following the return of a parent to its family after an illness. Fights and aggression took place at dusk or overnight and the onset was only observed in three cases. Three fights were fatal and male offspring were the aggressors in five of the fights, attacking their fathers [n=4] or a younger brother [n=1]. The median age of the male aggressor was 42 months. Mothers [n=2] were aggressive to daughters but no fathers attacked their sons. These data may contribute to our understanding of natal dispersal and pair formation of owl monkeys in nature.