Abstract # 198:

Scheduled for Monday, September 15, 2014 01:45 PM-02:00 PM: Session 27 (Mary Gay) Oral Presentation


A. Howard, D. Fragaszy, M. Madden, N. Nibbelink and L. A. Young
University of Georgia, Department of Psychology, Psychology Building, Athens, GA 30602-3013, USA
     This study investigates the influence of landscape variables on movement efficiency of bearded capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) using three models of movement and a novel callback method to experimentally manipulate travel. We generated a surface of resistance to movement by calculating the inverse of a MaxEnt habitat suitability model (AUC = 0.81) of our study group’s use of space. The movements of the monkeys were simulated between stop points and change points using a straight line path model, a minimum resistance model, and a landscape perceiving path model (i.e., moving a simulated monkey toward stop/change points using neighboring pixels of least resistance). The monkeys’ travel resembled straight line travel in resistance values (mean resistance, NRMSE = 5.49%), but their movement was not linear (sinuosity = 1.34). We conclude that capuchin monkeys move in zones of low resistance but do not use minimum resistance patterns. A field experiment demonstrated that when travel goals were manipulated, the monkeys moved more linearly (sinuosity = 1.18) and resistances incurred in travel also increased. These results indicate that for a limited, high quality resource, monkeys in our study group are sensitive to movement linearity. We present methodological advantages and challenges of the callback method of experimental analysis of animal movement. We conclude that future analyses of movement efficiency should include some consideration of the landscape context in which movement occurs.