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Seasonal variation and an “outbreak” of frog predation by tamarins


We report temporal variation and an “outbreak” of frog predation by moustached tamarins, Saguinus mystax, in north-eastern Peruvian Amazonia. Frog predation rates were generally very low, but strongly increased in October 2015. Other high rates, identified by outlier analyses, were also observed in September–November of other years. Over all study years, predation rates in this 3-month period were significantly higher than those in the remainder of the year, suggesting a seasonal pattern of frog predation by tamarins. Reduced fruit availability or increased frog abundance or a combination of both may be responsible for both the seasonal pattern and the specific “outbreak” of frog predation.

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Fig. 1
Fig. 2

(Photo: a Eckhard W. Heymann, b Marieke Wübker)


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We are most grateful to Juan Huanaquiri, Walter Mermao, Camilo Flores, Ney Shahuano, Manuel Shahuano, Jeissen Shahuano and Migdonio Arirama for their skilful assistance with fieldwork. Marieke Wübker kindly shared the photo in Fig. 2b, and Stephanie Koulenti kindly provided details of the terrestrial frog capture event. We thank the following institutions for issuing research permits since 1985: Dirección General Forestal y de Fauna of the Ministerio de Agricultura (Lima), Ministerio de Agricultura—Región Agraria XXII (Iquitos), Dirección de Recursos Naturales y Medio Ambiente—Gobierno Regional de la Amazonia (Iquitos), Dirección Regional Agraria—Gobierno Regional de Loreto (Iquitos), Instituto Nacional de Recursos Naturales (Lima) and Servicio Nacional Forestal y de Fauna Silvestre (Lima). Projects during which data reported in this paper were collected were partially funded by the German Research Council, the Christian-Vogel-Fonds of the Gesellschaft für Primatologie (GfP) and the Universitätsbund Göttingen.

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Correspondence to Eckhard W. Heymann.

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Lüffe, T.M., Tirado Herrera, E.R., Nadjafzadeh, M. et al. Seasonal variation and an “outbreak” of frog predation by tamarins. Primates 59, 549–552 (2018).

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