International Journal of Primatology

, Volume 7, Issue 5, pp 491–506 | Cite as

Seasonal variation in the diet of South African Galagos

  • Caroline Harcourt


The feeding behavior and diet of two species of bushbaby, Galago senegalensisand Galago crassicaudatus,in South Africa were examined in relation to seasonal changes in climate. The populations studied were allopatric, but both fed predominantly on Acaciagum and invertebrates. Data on their diet were collected by direct observation of a radiocollared female of each species and by analysis of fecal samples. Differences in diet were found between the species within seasons and within species between the seasons. Both spent more time gum-feeding in winter than in summer. Prey size and type differed between the species in summer but converged in winter. The quantity of insects taken was fairly similar between seasons for G. senegalensisbut dropped considerably for G. crassicaudatusin winter. These observations are interpreted in terms of interspecific differences in feeding strategies, which are considered to be a function of the difference in body size of the two galago species.

Key words

Galago senegalensis Galago crassicaudatus body size diet seasonal variation nocturnal primates 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Caroline Harcourt
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyWitwatersrand UniversityJohannesburgSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of ZoologyUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeUK

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