, Volume 23, Issue 3, pp 385-392

First online:

A comparison of intergroup behavior inCebus albifrons andC. apella

  • Thomas R. DeflerAffiliated withINDERENA and The American Peace Corps

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Comparative studies of free-ranging groups ofCebus albifrons andCebus apella in eastern Colombia showed strong differences in the manner in which groups of each species interacted.Cebus albifrons troops were large and multi-male; they showed strongly aggressive tendencies towards neighboring groups of the same species and they defended a territory with little overlap of neighbors, both by means of long-distance spacing calls and by fighting. In contrast,Cebus apella troops were small, sometimes containing only one adult male; they exhibited pacific interactions and curiosity towards neighboring groups of the same species and did not defend a territory, allowing extensive overlapping with their neighbors. Such social differences in closely related species which are found in identical habitats call into question purely ecological interpretations for such differences.