International Journal of Primatology

, Volume 31, Issue 4, pp 609–626

Effects of Seasonal Folivory and Frugivory on Ranging Patterns in Rhinopithecus roxellana

  • Yankuo Li
  • Zhigang Jiang
  • Chunwang Li
  • Cyril C. Grueter
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10764-010-9416-4

Cite this article as:
Li, Y., Jiang, Z., Li, C. et al. Int J Primatol (2010) 31: 609. doi:10.1007/s10764-010-9416-4

Abstract

The distribution of food resources in time and space may affect the diet, ranging pattern, and social organization of primates. We studied variation in ranging patterns in a group of Sichuan snub-nosed monkeys (Rhinopithecus roxellana) over winter and summer in response to variation in their diet in the Qingmuchuan Nature Reserve, China. There was a clear diet shift from highly folivorous in winter to highly frugivorous in summer. The home range was 8.09 km2 in summer and 7.43 km2 in winter, calculated via the 95% kernel method. Corresponding to the diet shift, the focal group traveled significantly longer distances in summer (mean 1020 ± 69 m/d) than in winter (mean 676 ± 53 m/d); the daily range was also significantly greater in summer (mean 0.27 ± 0.02 km2/d) than in winter (mean 0.21 ± 0.01 km2/d). There was no significant variation in home range size between winter and summer, and the monkeys did not use geographically distinct ranges in summer and winter. However, overlap in the actual activity area and core range between winter and summer was only 0.13 km2, representing 4.4% of the summer core area and 5.3% of the winter core area. Differences were apparent between summer and winter ranging patterns: In summer, the group traveled repeatedly and uninterruptedly across its home range and made 3 circles of movement along a fixed route in 31 d; in winter, the activity area was composed of 3 disconnected patches, and the focal group stayed in each patch for an average of 8 successive days without traveling among patches. Winter range use was concentrated on mixed evergreen and deciduous forest patches where leaves and fruits were available, whereas the summer range pattern correlates significantly positively with the distribution of giant dogwood (Cornus controversa) fruits. Thus it appears that the diet shift of Sichuan snub-nosed monkeys between winter and summer caused the monkeys to use their home range in different ways, supporting the hypothesis that food resources determine primate ranging patterns.

Keywords

frugivoryrange sizeranging patternRhinopithecus roxellanaSichuan snub-nosed monkey

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yankuo Li
    • 1
    • 2
  • Zhigang Jiang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Chunwang Li
    • 1
    • 2
  • Cyril C. Grueter
    • 3
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Animal Ecology and Conservation Biology, Institute of ZoologyChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Graduate University of the Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Department of PrimatologyMax Planck Institute for Evolutionary AnthropologyLeipzigGermany