, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 35-47

First online:

Development and function of marking and sexual behavior in the malagasy prosimian primate,Lemur fulvus

  • Charles F. ChandlerJrAffiliated withZoology Department, Duke University

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Observations on the development of marking and sexual behavior in captive, adolescentLemur fulvus in social and restricted environments yielded comparative data on marking and sexual behavior and speculations on the function of marking. Marking behavior was differentiated into four types which differed in the results in both onset and frequency for individual animals and between test groups. Components of sexual behavior of the males developed at first in play and were later integrated into the adult sequence of mating. As the adolescents aged, components of sexual behavior were observed less and less in play contexts. Types of sexual behavior are associated with other behavior besides mating as in other primate species. Male and femaleL. fulvus seem to mature sexually at approximately one year of age, but may not become socially mature until a later time.