Abstract # 5809 Event # 141:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 14, 2014 04:45 PM-05:00 PM: Session 21 (Mary Gay) Oral Presentation


P. A. Garber1 and J. C. Bicca-Marques2
1Univ. of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Dept. of Anthropology, Urbana, IL 61801, USA, 2Laboratório de Primatologia, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
     All species of tamarins are characterized by high levels of social tolerance and a system of cooperative infant caregiving. However, little is known regarding the strength and context of individual partner preferences and whether subgroups of individuals form special social relationships. In this study, we conducted a series of field experiments to examine the effects of food productivity and resource density on social foraging strategies in a group of 9 individually marked tamarins in Brazil. The tamarins were presented with 8 visually identical feeding platforms located 5 m apart in a circular arrangement. In two experimental conditions 2 of the 8 platforms contained a concealed food reward and in the remaining two conditions all 8 platforms contained a concealed food reward. We found that as the number of baited feeding platforms decreased, the number of tamarin co-feeders increased. When only 2 platforms contained food, 3-8 tamarins shared the platform during 54-66% of visits. Using social network analyses (SOCPROG) we found no consistent pattern of dyadic partner preferences or evidence of a strong pair bond between the lone breeding female and the highest ranking adult male. The tamarins formed 1-3 cliques during all experimental conditions, with juveniles, the breeding female, and low ranking adult males the primary participants. Network analysis offers critical insight into the social dynamics of male tolerance and cooperative caregiving in wild tamarins.