Abstract # 206:

Scheduled for Monday, August 28, 2017 02:15 PM-02:30 PM: (National Ballroom Salon B) Oral Presentation


C. M. Brand, A. J. Hickmott, K. J. Boose and F. J. White
University of Oregon, Department of Anthropology, Eugene, OR 97403, USA
     The complex relationship between ecology and social structure has been long studied in primates. In bonobos (Pan paniscus), research has highlighted the importance of aspects of feeding competition in the evolution of female social cohesion. Here, we examined how different ecological measures correlate with affiliative, aggressive, and sexual behaviors. We collected ecological data on 133 visits to food patches and interaction data over 242 hours on three bonobo communities at the N’dele site in the Lomako Forest, DRC. We used non-parametric correlations to assess the relationship within ecological variables, within social behavior, and between ecological variables and social behavior. A stepwise regression model was also used to examine the relationship between ecology and social behavior. We found several correlations within ecological variables including tree radius with amount of food removed from a patch (p < 0.001) and party size with amount of food removed (p < 0.001). We also found several correlations within social behavior including GG rubbing with mating (p < 0.001) and male-male aggression with male-male grooming (p < 0.001). Our regression analysis revealed that amount of food removed from a food patch predicted GG rubbing, female-female grooming, male-female grooming, and mating frequency (p < 0.05). These results highlight the close relationship between high food patch quality and strong affiliation in wild bonobos.