Abstract # 90:

Scheduled for Thursday, August 18, 2005 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: (Cambridge/Oxford Room) Poster Presentation

Group structures and female-female agonism in corral-living groups of pigtailed monkeys (Macaca nemestrina)

E. Zucker
Department of Psychology, Loyola University, New Orleans, LA 70118, USA
     Compositions of social groups can influence patterns of agonism. For pigtailed monkey groups housed indoors, less female-female agonism occurred when a male was present than when absent (Dazey et al., 1977). In the present study, the dyadic, agonistic interactions between adult females in seven groups of provisioned, corral-living pigtailed monkeys at the Tulane National Primate Research Center were recorded via all occurrences sampling (618 interactions in 21 hours; 29.4/hr), and the incidence of female-female agonism analyzed with regard to group structure variables, particularly female-to-male ratios (range: 8.7 – 27.0 females/male). Groups contained, on average, 64.7 monkeys [2.6 adult males, 30.9 adult females, 22.5 immatures (< 4.0 years of age), and 8.7 infants]. The only group structure variable related to female-female agonism was female-to-male ratio, which was significantly correlated, across groups, with the per hour rate of female-female agonism (r = 0.81, df = 5, P < 0.03); more female-female agonism occurred in groups with more females per male. The presence of more males limits agonism between females, consistent with the findings for pigtailed monkey groups housed indoors. The observed pattern suggests reduced competition among females for males in groups with lower female-to-male ratios, having implications for reproductive competition and reproductive success, as well as for captive management of this species. Supported by NIH grants RR00164 to the TNPRC and RR00166 to the WaNPRC.