Abstract # 168:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 18, 2011 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 23 (Salon G (Sixth Floor)) Poster Presentation


WESTERN RED COLOBUS (PILIOCOLOBUS BADIUS TEMMINCKII) AND GREEN VERVET (CHLOROCEBUS SABAEUS) DISTRIBUTION, RESOURCE USE, AND BEHAVIOR IN A FOREST FRAGMENT OF THE GAMBIA

K. M. Zdilla1,2 and C. K. Wolovich2,3
1University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA, 2Saint Mary's College of Maryland, 3MacMurray College
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Western red colobus (Piliocolobus badius temminckii) and green vervets (Chlorocebus sabaeus) occupy distinct unbuffered edge, buffered edge, and interior microhabitats in Abuko Nature Reserve, an isolated forest fragment in the Gambia. Primates were expected to frequent microhabitats in proportion to the species importance values (SpIV) of vegetation resources surveyed [n=576 plants] along line transects [n=16]. If resources were equally abundant, primates were expected to prefer more protected regions. When primates were encountered during transect surveys [n = 96], vigilance behaviors were scored using instantaneous sampling during fifteen-minute observation periods [n=56]. Despite 23% greater resource availability and lower disturbance in interior transects, folivorous colobus frequented the buffered edge most often [X2=8.65; p<0.05]. Colobus spent significantly more time vigilant [X2=10.64; p<0.01] and greater than two meters from the ground [X2=81.56; p<0.0001] on either edge than in the interior. Omnivorous green vervets were encountered twice as often in both edge habitats than in the interior [X2=5.99; p<0.05] as predicted by higher SpIV of vegetation resources in both edge habitats [X2=26.31; p<0.0001]. Vigilance behavior of green vervets did not vary with microhabitat type, but they spent more time greater than two meters from the ground on edge transects than in the interior [X2=12.94; p<0.01]. The behavioral ecology of red colobus and green vervets is impacted by fragment region, suggesting that both resource abundance and edge proximity govern primate distribution.