Preliminary study on eye colour in Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata) in their natural habitat
- 151 Downloads
Eye colour in Japanese macaques shows apparent differences between individuals, continuously ranging from orange (bright), through shades of yellow and hazel-blue to dark blue (dark). We arbitrarily classified them into either ‘yellow’ eyes or ‘blue’ eyes based on the yellow area occupying in the iris’ peripupillary ring. Most Japanese macaques have yellow eyes after infant phase, whilst 19, 17, 12, and 15% of monkeys (>6 months, sexes combined) have blue-eye in studied two groups of Shodoshima and two groups of Takasakiyama, respectively. Frequency of eye colour did not differ between males and females, but significantly differed in each age class. Blue eyes significantly more frequently occurred in newborns, infants and aged monkeys than in juveniles and prime adults. Data from mother–infant pairs indicated eye colour could be inherited from their parents. A case of asymmetric eye colour in Japanese macaques was found from a sample of 1962 individuals. Eye colour variation of Japanese macaques was discussed in relation to those of humans and rhesus macaques. A possible evolutionary model of eye colour in Japanese macaques was discussed.
KeywordsJapanese macaque Macaque fuscata Eye colour Iris pigment Age related trait Polygenetic trait
We received financial support from the twenty-first century COE program by JSPS. We thank staffs of the Choshikei Monkey Park and the Takasakiyama Monkey Park for taking care of us in the field and making me feel so welcome in Japan. We thank Dr. A. Mori, Dr. H. Ohsawa, Dr. M. A. Huffman, Dr. Y. Muroyama, Dr. H. Sugiura, Dr. Y. Hamada, all members of the Department of Ecology and Social behavior and Center for Human Evolution Modeling Research in Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, who gave us helpful comments.
- Gerald M, Rasmussen KL, Suomi SJ, Higley D (2004) A characterization of the eye color variability in captive and free-ranging rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). Am J Primatol 62(Suppl 1):42Google Scholar
- Gloger CL.(1833) Das Abändern der Vögel durch Einfluss des Klimas. Breslau, BreslauGoogle Scholar
- Itani J (1975) Twenty years with Mount Takasaki monkeys. In: Bermant G, Lindburg DG (eds) Primate utilization and conservation. Wiley, New York, pp 101–125Google Scholar
- Kessler MS, Rawlines RG, Kaufman PL (1986) The golden rhesus macaques of Cayo Santiago. In: Rawlins RG, Kessler MJ (eds) The Cayo Santiago macaques, history, behaviour and biology. State University of New York Press, Albany, pp 263–268Google Scholar
- Loy J, August P (1988) Possible correlation between aging and plantar depigmentation in patas monkeys. Lab Primate Newsl 27(3):12–13Google Scholar
- O’Rourke DH (1979) Components of genetic and environmental variation in hamadrays baboon morphometrics. Am J Phys Anthropol 50:469Google Scholar
- Perrin N, Goudet J (2001) Inbreeding, kinship, and the evolution of natal dispersal. In: Clobert J, Danchin A, Dhondt A, Nichils JD (eds) Dispersal. Oxford University Press, New York, pp 123–142Google Scholar
- Riopelle AJ (1966) “Snowflake” the world first white gorilla. Natl Geogr 131:443–447Google Scholar
- Stjernschantz JW (2002) Mechanism and clinical significance of prostaglandin-induced iris pigmentation. Surv Ophthalmol Soc 101:217–222Google Scholar
- Watanabe K (2004) Reports on censuses of Shodoshima monkeys. Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, pp 1–17Google Scholar