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Species Diversity Among Galagos with Special Reference to Mate Recognition

  • Simon K. Bearder
  • Paul E. Honess
  • Lesley Ambrose
Chapter

Abstract

This paper argues that the number of species of nocturnal primates has been seriously underestimated. It has been traditional to separate species largely on the basis of the physical characteristics of museum specimens. This is satisfactory when the animals’ themselves recognize one another by sight, as in the majority of birds and day-living primates, but where scent and sound play the predominant role in male-female recognition, species boundaries can easily be overlooked. As Tinbergen has pointed out, closely related species do not ordinarily interbreed because: ‘the various signals serving attraction, persuasion, appeasement, and synchronisation, are so very different from one species to another.’ (Tinbergen, 1953, p.36). Here we use one conspicuous element in the communication system of galagos, which are all nocturnal, to demonstrate that similarlooking populations frequently belong to different species which have yet to be investigated.

Keywords

Tape Recording Museum Specimen Loud Call Vocal Repertoire Unpublished Master Dissertation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Simon K. Bearder
    • 1
  • Paul E. Honess
    • 1
  • Lesley Ambrose
    • 1
  1. 1.Anthropology Unit, Department of Social SciencesOxford Brookes UniversityOxfordUK

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