Terrestrial Behavior of Ateles spp
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Spider monkeys (Ateles spp.) are well known for their highly arboreal lifestyle, spending much of their time in the highest levels of the canopy and rarely venturing to the ground. To investigate terrestriality by Ateles and to illuminate the conditions under which spider monkeys venture to the ground, we analyzed ad libitum data from 5 study sites, covering 2 species and 5 subspecies. Three of the sites are in Central/North America: Barro Colorado Island (BCI), Panama (Ateles geoffroyi panamensis), Santa Rosa National Park, Costa Rica (A. g. frontatus), and Punta Laguna, Mexico (A. g. yucatanensis). The 2 remaining sites are in South America: Cocha Cashu Biological Station, Perú (A. belzebuth chamek) and Yasuni National Park, Ecuador (A. b. belzebuth). Terrestrialism by Ateles at all sites is rare; however, it is more restricted at the 2 South American sites. In South America, ground use only occurred in the contexts of eating soil or rotten wood and visiting salt licks. In contrast at the 3 sites with Ateles geoffroyi it rarely occurred in a feeding context, but instead more frequently while drinking from streams during the dry season, by adult females escaping attack by adult males, and as part of a chase game. In addition, on BCI adult males were on the ground before attacking adult females. We discuss potential explanations, e.g., climate, species differences, predation pressure, for the differences between the Central/North and South American observations.
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- Terrestrial Behavior of Ateles spp
International Journal of Primatology
Volume 26, Issue 5 , pp 1039-1051
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
- Additional Links
- Terrestrial behavior
- spider monkeys
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Department of Anthropology, Pomona College, 420 N. Harvard Avenue, Claremont, CA, 91711-6397, USA
- 2. School of Biological and Earth Sciences, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom
- 3. Department of Zoology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
- 4. Pronatura Peninsula de Yucatan, Merida, Yucatan, Mexico
- 5. Department of Animal Biology, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL, USA
- 6. Department of Anthropology, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY, USA
- 7. Anthropology, Peace College, Raleigh, NC, USA