Population Size and Habitat use of Spider Monkeys at Punta Laguna, Mexico

  • Gabriel Ramos-Fernández
  • Bárbara Ayala-Orozco

Abstract

The Yucatán Peninsula is currently a mosaic of forest in various stages of secondary succession, mostly attributed to human-induced disturbances. No more than 50 years ago, approximately 86,000 km2 of the peninsula were covered by medium, semi-evergreen forest (Rzedowski, 1978). Today only a few unprotected fragments of this vegetation type remain larger than 1,000 km2, and deforestation continues at a rate of 8,000 km2 per year (Challenger, 1998). How does this disturbance affect spider monkey populations? Do spider monkeys modify their behavior in any way to survive in a fragmented habitat? If so, what is the minimum size of a forest fragment that can support a healthy population of spider monkeys? How can the remaining populations be protected?

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gabriel Ramos-Fernández
    • 1
  • Bárbara Ayala-Orozco
    • 2
  1. 1.Pronatura Península de YucatánMérida YucatánMéxico
  2. 2.Department of Environmental StudiesUniversity of CaliforniaSanta CruzUSA

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