Polyspecific associations of Cercopithecus campbelli and C. petaurista with C. diana: what are the costs and benefits?
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Polyspecific associations (PSA) are common in many African primate communities, including the diurnal primates at Taï Forest, Côte d’Ivoire. In this paper I use data on the PSA of two forest guenons, Campbell’s (Cercopithecus campbelli) and lesser spot-nosed monkeys (C. petaurista), with Diana monkeys (C. diana) and other primates to clarify interspecific relationships during 17 months including a 3-month low-fruit period. I analyzed association in relation to fruit availability and measured forest strata use for C. campbelli and C. petaurista when alone and in associations with and without C. diana. I also measured predator risk and reactions to potential predators. C. campbelli and C. petaurista had high association rates with C. diana monkeys, and fruit availability did not influence association rates. C. campbelli and C. petaurista used higher strata when in association with C. diana than when alone, but they used even higher strata when associated with other primates without C. diana. This suggested that C. diana competitively exclude C. campbelli and C. petaurista from higher strata. There were relatively large numbers of potential predators, and C. diana were usually the first callers to threatening stimuli, suggesting that antipredator benefits of association with C. diana outweighed the competitive costs. C. campbelli spent more time in association with C. diana than C. petaurista did and appeared to be more reliant on C. diana for antipredator benefits. C. petaurista were less reliant on C. diana because of a cryptic strategy and may have associated less in some months because of high chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) presence.
KeywordsMixed-species associations Forest guenons Cercopithecus campbelli Cercopithecus petaurista Cercopithecus diana
I would like to thank the minister of the environment and the forest, the minister of scientific research, the director of the Center for Ecological Research at Taï and the PACPNT of Côte d’Ivoire for giving me permission to work at Taï National Park. I would also like to thank the directors of the Taï Monkey Project (TMP), Ronald Noë, Klaus Zuberbühler, Scott McGraw, and Johannes Refisch for the opportunity to study with the TMP. I would like to thank my advisor, Marina Cords, members of my dissertation committee (John Oates, Don Melnick, Fred Koontz, and Cliff Jolly), Peter Waser, and an anonymous reviewer for helpful comments towards the development of this manuscript. The fieldwork was possible through a dissertation improvement grant from Leakey Foundation.
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