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A study of territoriality in Cercopithecus diana : Do females take an active part in territorial defence?

Hill, CM; (1991) A study of territoriality in Cercopithecus diana : Do females take an active part in territorial defence? Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

In the past, studies of territoriality in primates have concentrated on the role of males in territorial defence. But sociobiological theory of female strategies, and in particular Wrangham's model of female-bonded primate groups, suggest that in many species females should be investing considerable amounts of energy in defence of their food resources against other groups of females. The aims of this thesis are to: 1. investigate the roles of male and female Cercopithecus diana in territorial defence, and 2. determine whether female behaviour is consistent with food resource defence and male behaviour with reproductive resource defence as predicted by Wrangham's model. Annual activity budgets, feeding, ranging and territorial calling behaviour of two groups of C. diana are presented, alongside information on plant production cycles and the spatial distribution of potential food resources. Diana monkeys were observed living in groups of about 20 animals, comprising 1-2 adult males, 6-10 adult females, and subadults, juveniles and infants. Infants were born during the dry season. Diana monkeys feed on fruits, flowers, leaves and arthropods. Diet varies across the seasons following plant production cycles. Ranging patterns are determined, at least in part, by the spatial distribution of particular flowers and fruits that are important components of the diet. Females initiate territorial calling bouts significantly more often than does the group male. Intergroup encounters occurred very infrequently, but when they did it was the females, subadults and juveniles that were observed fighting with other groups while the males gave loud calls and jumping displays to one another. The thesis looks at whether females are defending food resources against other females. Territorial calling is investigated with respect to location within territory, and spatial distribution of important food resources. Male calling behaviour and defence of reproductive females is also considered. The implications of Diana monkeys calling behaviour are discussed in relation to theories of primate territoriality and defence with particular reference to Wrangham's model of female-bonded groups.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: A study of territoriality in Cercopithecus diana : Do females take an active part in territorial defence?
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10127831
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