, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 71-77

First online:

Comparability among measures of primate diets

  • Jeffrey A. KurlandAffiliated withDepartment of Anthropology, The Pennsylvania State University
  • , Steven J. C. GaulinAffiliated withDepartment of Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh

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Feeding niche constitutes one of the most basic ecological parameters defining any species. Unfortunately, our picture of primate feeding niches is suspect because field workers have used a variety of observational techniques to assess diet in the wild. Here the question of the comparability of these techniques is explored empirically, by comparing the dietary profiles of a small group of primate species that have been studied by two methods in a single locality. These methods are shown to yield quite different results, both in the realm of simple description, and in the realm of behavioral-ecological hypothesis testing.

Key Words

Diet Feeding time Amount ingested Methods Gross-species comparison