International Journal of Primatology

, Volume 16, Issue 5, pp 761–791 | Cite as

A survey of the distribution and density of the primates of Guyana

  • Robert W. Sussman
  • Jane E. Phillips-Conroy
Article

Abstract

In January through February 1994, we conducted the first broad-scale survey of Guyanese primates since 1975. Our goals were (1) to follow up questions raised in the earlier survey, (2) to compare population densities, and (3) to locate potential sites for future long-term research. We used distributional survey methods along trails and rivers and interviewed local inhabitants in each region. We surveyed five general areas, two of which had been studied in 1975. The distribution reported in 1975 for five monkey species—Alouatta seniculus, Cebus olivaceus, Pithecia pithecia, Chiropotes satanas,and Saimiri sciureus—was confirmed. However, questions were raised concerning the western extent of the range of three species: Ateles paniscus, Cebus apella,and Saguinus midas.In comparing densities between 1994 and 1975, we found a significant drop in group densities over the past 20 years and a shift in relative proportions of individual primate species over time. For example, although the total number of kilometers surveyed was identical, group densities were three times higher in 1975 than in 1994. Further, group densities of Ateles, Alouatta,and Pitheciawere much lower, while those of Saguinuswere similar in both years. These findings strongly suggest that habitat destruction and continued hunting pressure are affecting the primate populations.

Key Words

Guyana New World primates distribution density 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Baal, L. J., Mittenneier, R. A., and van Roosmalen, M. G. M. (1988). Primates and protected areas in Surinam.Oryx 22: 7–14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Beebe, W. (1921).Edge of the Jungle, H. Holt, New York.Google Scholar
  3. Beebe, M. B., and Beebe, C. W. (1910).Our Search for a Wilderness: An Account of Two Ornithological Expeditions to Venezuela and British Guiana, H. Holt, New York.Google Scholar
  4. Bodini, R., and Pérez-Hernandez, R. (1987) Distribution of the species and subspecies of cebids in Venezuela.Fieldiana Zool. n.s. 39: 231–244.Google Scholar
  5. Bourne, G. R. (1975). The red-billed toucan in Guyana. InThe Living Bird, 13th Annual, Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY.Google Scholar
  6. Bourne, G. R. (1992). Lekking behavior in the neotropical frog,Ololygon rubra.Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol. 31: 173–180.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bourne, G. R. (1993). Proximate costs and benefits of mate acquisition at leks of the frog,Ololygon rubra.Anim. Behav. 45: 1051–1059.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Brockelman, W. Y., and Ali, A. (1987). Methods of surveying forest primates. In Marsh, C. W., and Mittermeier, R. A. (eds.),Primate Conservation in the Tropical Rain Forest, Alan R. Liss, New York.Google Scholar
  9. Defier, T. R., and Pintor, D. (1985). Censusing primates by transect in a forest of known primate density.Int. J. Primatol 6: 243–260.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Emmons, L. H. (1990).Neotropical Rainforest Mammals: A Field Guide, University of Chicago Press, Chicago.Google Scholar
  11. Ford, S. M., and Hobbes, D. G. (1994). Species differentiation in the postcranial skeleton ofCebus.Am. J. Phys. Anthropol. Suppl. 88.Google Scholar
  12. Fowler, J. M., and Cope, J. B. (1964). Notes on the harpy eagle in British Guiana.Auk 81: 257–273.Google Scholar
  13. Garcia, J. E. (1993). Comparisons of estimated densities computed forSaguinus fuscicollis andSaguinus labiatus using line-transect sampling.Primate Rep. 37: 19–29.Google Scholar
  14. Hershkovitz, P. (1976).Living New World Monkeys (Platyrrhini), Vol. 1, University of Chicago Press, Chicago.Google Scholar
  15. Hoogmoed, M. S. (1979). The herpetofauna of the Guianan region. In Duellman, W. E. (ed.),The South American Herpetofauna: Its Origin, Evolution, and Dispersal, Mass. Nat. Hist. Univ. Kans. Monogr. 7, pp. 241–279.Google Scholar
  16. Iwokrama Report (1993).The Commonwealth and Government of Guyana Iwokrama Rain Forest Programme.Google Scholar
  17. Kinzey, W. G., Norconk, M. A., and Alvarez-Cordero, E. (1988). Primate survey of Eastern Bolivar, Venezuela.Primate Conserv. 9: 66–70.Google Scholar
  18. Lindeman, J. C., and Mori, S. A. (1989). The Guianas. In Campbell, D. G., and Hammond, H. D. (eds.),Floristic Inventory of Tropical Countries: The Status of Plant Systematics, Collections and Vegetation, Plus Recommendations for the Future, New York Botanical Garden, pp. 375–390.Google Scholar
  19. Maguire, B. (1970). On the flora of the Guiana highlands.Biotrop. 2: 85–100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Mittermeier, R. A. (1987). Hunting and its effects on wild primate populations in Suriname. In Robinson, J. G., and Redford, K. H. (ed.),Neotropical Wildlife Use and Conservation, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp. 93–110.Google Scholar
  21. Mittermeier, R. A., Kinzey, W. G., and Mast, R. B. (1993). Neotropical primate conservation. In Arambulo, P., Encarnacion, F., Estupinan, J., Samame, H., Watson, C. R., and Weller, R. E. (eds.),Primates of the Americas: Strategies for Conservation and Sustained Use in Biomedical Research, Battelle Press, Columbus, pp. 11–28.Google Scholar
  22. Moonen, J. M. (1987). Hybrid capuchin in Paramaribo Zoo, Suriname.Primate Conserv. 8: 57.Google Scholar
  23. Muckenhirn, N. A., and Eisenberg, J. F. (1978). The status of primates in Guyana and ecological correlations for neotropical primates. In Chivers, D. L., and Lane-Petter, W. (eds.),Recent Advances in Primatology, Vol. 2, Conservation, Academic Press, London, pp. 27–30.Google Scholar
  24. Muckenhirn, N. A., Mortensen, B. K., Vessey, S., Fraser, C. E. O., and Singh, B. (1975). Report on a primate survey in Guyana.Report to the Pan American Health Organization (unpublished).Google Scholar
  25. Napier, P. H. (1976).Catalogue of Primates in the British Museum (Natural History). Part 1: Families Callithricidae, Cebidae, Br. Mus. Nat. Hist., London.Google Scholar
  26. National Research Council (1981).Techniques for the Study of Primate Population Ecology, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
  27. Norconk, M. A., Sussman, R. W., Phillips-Conroy, J. (1995). Primates of Guyana Shield forests. In Rosenberger, A., Norconk, M. A., and Garber, P. (eds.),Adaptive Radiations of Neotropical Primates: Essays in Honor of W. G. Kinzey, Plenum Press, New York (in preparation).Google Scholar
  28. Rapid Assessment Program Survey (1993).A Biological Assessment of the Kanuku Mountains Region of Southwestern Guyana, RAP Working Papers 5, Conservation International, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  29. Redford, K. H. (1992). The empty forest.Bioscience 42: 412–422.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Redford, K. H., and Robinson, J. G. (1987). The game of choice: Patterns of indian and colonist hunting in the neotropics.Am. Anthropol. 89: 650–667.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Rettig, N. L. (1978). Breeding behavior of the Harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja).Auk 95: 629–643.Google Scholar
  32. Rodway, J. (1987).In the Guiana Forest: Studies of Nature in Relation to the Struggle for Life, 3rd ed., Fisher Unwin, London.Google Scholar
  33. Sarmiento, G. (1983). The savannahs of tropical America. In Bourliere, F. (ed.),Tropical Savannas, Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp. 245–288.Google Scholar
  34. Skorupa, J. P. (1987). Do line-transect surveys systematically underestimate primate densities in logged forest?Am. J. Primatol. 13: 1–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Snyder, D. (1966).The Birds of Guyana, Peabody Museum, Salem.Google Scholar
  36. Tate, G. H. H. (1939). The mammals of the Guiana region.Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 76(5): 151–229.Google Scholar
  37. Ter Steege, H. (1993).Patterns in Tropical Rain Forest in Guyana, Tropenbos Series 3, Tropenbos Foundation.Google Scholar
  38. Thomas, O. (1901). On a collection of mammals from the Kanuku Mountains, British Guiana.Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist Ser. 7, 7: 139–154.Google Scholar
  39. Tropenbos (1991).Guyana and Tropenbos, Tropenbos Foundation, Utrecht.Google Scholar
  40. Vessey, S. H., Mortenson, B. K., and Muckenhirn, N. A. (1978). Size and characteristics of primate groups in Guyana. In Chivers, D. L., and Lane-Petter, W. (eds.),Recent Advances in Primatology, VoL 2. Conservation, Academic Press, London, pp. 187–188.Google Scholar
  41. Whitesides, G. H., Oates, J. F., Green S. M., and Kluberdanz, R. P. (1988). Estimating primate densities from transects in a West African rain forest: A comparison of techniques.J. Anim. Ecol. 57: 345–367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Wolfheim, J. H. (1983).Primates of the World: Distribution, Abundance and Conservation, University of Washington Press, Seattle.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert W. Sussman
    • 1
  • Jane E. Phillips-Conroy
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyWashington UniversitySt. Louis
  2. 2.Department of Anatomy and NeurobiologyWashington University School of MedicineSt. Louis

Personalised recommendations