Abstract # 175:

Scheduled for Friday, June 21, 2013 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 21 (SG Foyer ABC) Poster Presentation


FUNGI AS FOOD RESOURCES FOR JAPANESE MACAQUES (MACACA FUSCATA YAKUI) ON YAKUSHIMA ISLAND, JAPAN

A. Sawada1, H. Sato2, E. Inoue3, Y. Otani1 and G. Hanya1
1Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, Kanrin 41-2, Inuyama, Aichi 484-8506, Japan, 2Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies, Kyoto University, 3Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University
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     While Japanese macaques include fungi in their diet, fungi have received less attention compared with other food items. Here we present data on mycophagy (fungal feeding) by Japanese macaques in Yakushima National Park on Yakushima Island (30ºN, 130ºE; with an area of 505 km2), which is located in southwestern part of Japan. We collected the behavioral data by focal animal sampling (669 observation hours) as well as pieces of fungal fruiting bodies that macaques left behind by all-occurrence sampling (478 samples collected) to carry out molecular species identification (235 samples identified). Although fungi accounted for only 2.2% of their diet, macaques consumed as many as 67 fungi species throughout the year. 148 aggressive interactions were observed where the focal animal was the victim, and 43 of these aggressions occurred while the focal animal was feeding. Among 8 food types (fruit, seed, leaf, shoot, flower, bark/twig, fungus and invertebrate), aggressive interactions occurred more often than expected when the victim was eating fungi or invertebrates (p < 0.05, Fisher’s exact test). These results indicate that although they are of minor importance from a quantitative viewpoint, fungi might have some value to macaques, possibly as “bonus” foods. Supported by JSPS-MEXT (No. 225374; No. 23657018; No. 20770195) and gCOE Program, Kyoto University.