Abstract # 6253 Event # 252:

Scheduled for Saturday, June 20, 2015 01:30 PM-01:45 PM: (Cascade H) Oral Presentation


CAPTIVE GORILLA GORILLA AND PAN PANISCUS SHOW SIMILARITIES IN SOCIAL PROXIMITY IN CERTAIN BEHAVIORAL CONTEXTS BUT NOT IN OTHERS

S. Milne1,2 and J. P. Taglialatela1,2
1Kennesaw State University, 1000 Chastain Road, Kennesaw, Georgia 30144, USA, 2Ape Cognition and Conservation Initiative
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     Similarities in habitat structure and feeding ecology among wild gorillas and bonobos have been suggested as a causal factor leading to comparable social characteristics. Gregarious relationships, especially among females, are thought to be facilitated by THV use in both species. As a result, both apes are commonly viewed as non-competitive foragers often feeding in large groups. However, few studies have directly compared the socio-ecology of the two species. For this study, we hypothesized that both species would spend more time in close proximity to conspecifics, rather than alone, across behavioral contexts. Individual focal follows on 9 gorillas at Zoo Atlanta and 10 bonobos at the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens were performed for a total of 46.1 hours of observation. Behavioral contexts were categorized as feeding, resting, and other and conspecific proximity was coded as alone or not alone. Data were analyzed for both sexes, and for just females of each species. The percentage of time each individual spent alone in each context was compared using a repeated measures ANOVA with species as the between subject factor. These data indicate a significant interaction between behavioral context and species F(2,16)=9.44, p=.002. Post-hoc analyses indicate that although both species spend similar amounts of time alone while feeding and resting, bonobos were more likely than gorillas to be in proximity of a conspecific outside of these two behavioral contexts.