Abstract # 85:

Scheduled for Thursday, June 18, 2015 06:00 PM-08:00 PM: (Cascade AJBCD) Poster Presentation


PREDICTING OWL MONKEY PAIRING SUCCESS FROM THE FIRST HOUR OF INTERACTION

T. McAdams, S. P. Lambeth and L. E. Williams
Michale E. Keeling Center for Comparative Medicine, Department of Veterinary Sciences, University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Bastrop, TX 78602, USA
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     Owl monkeys (Aotus sp) are nocturnal primates native to South America. Typical social groups consist of monogamous pairs and their juveniles and/or infants, formed as juveniles of each sex emigrate from their natal groups. In the Owl Monkey Breeding and Research Resource, a long term breeding resource of owl monkeys, efforts are made to form pairs to avoid inbreeding and increase genetic diversity. Potential mates are placed in adjacent cages providing protected contact and each with its own next box. After three days, the potential mates are given free access to both cages. We collected instantaneous scan data during the first hour of interactions from 50 pair formations. We analyzed percent of time animals were either vigilant, sleeping, eating, drinking, engaged in agonistic interactions, or nonsocial manipulation of objects in the cage between successful and unsuccessful pairs. Pairs that were ultimately successful spent significantly more time vigilant together [ANOVA, p<0.01] and in proximity [ANOVA, p<0.01] with one another. They also spent significantly more time in the same nest box [Chi Square, p<0.01] than unsuccessful monkey pairs. The pairs did not show behavioral synchrony, defined as both owl monkeys engaged in the same behavior in the same scan. This study provides a guide for successfully pairing owl monkeys, and may stimulate field observers to develop hypotheses about what they may see during pair formations.