Abstract # 158:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 14, 2014 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 22 (Decatur B) Poster Presentation


PRELIMINARY CENSUS OF FREE RANGING VERVET MONKEYS, CHLOROCEBUS SABAEUS, IN DANIA BEACH, FLORIDA

D. M. Williams1, E. T. Broemel2 and K. M. Detwiler1,2
1Florida Atlantic University, 777 Glades Road, Department of Biological Sciences, SC-1 Lab 253, Boca Raton, FL 33433, USA, 2Florida Atlantic University, Department of Anthropology, 777 Glades Road, SO 171, Boca Raton, FL 33431
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     Observations of vervet monkeys, Chlorocebus sabaeus, have been documented in 3700 hectares of mangrove preserves of Dania Beach, Florida since the 1950’s. A scientific census in 1995 provided confirmation of this population. The 1995 census showed the population consisted of two groups with a total of 36 individuals. We resurveyed the population from January-April 2014 by visiting sites where monkeys have been reported either in the media or by local residents. We found the vervets inhabit two geographically isolated areas, separated by a man-made waterway. The population is divided into three groups with a total of 18 individuals. Group A occupies the northern part of the mangroves, and consists of 3 adult males, 1 juvenile male, 5 adult females, and 1 infant. Group B occupies the central part of the mangroves, and consists of 1 adult male, 2 adult females, 1 sub-adult female, and 2 juveniles. Group C occupies the southern part of the mangroves, and consists of 2 adult females. In the 1995 study, this southern group ranged in size from 19-23 individuals. Our results indicate the population decreased over the past 19 years. To confirm this population decrease, research will expand surveys into unexplored areas of the mangrove preserve to document the presence or absence of additional groups. Ongoing research will investigate day ranges, behavior, and feeding ecology of this feral primate population.