Anthropology Publications

Title

Predation and Cathemerality: Comparing the Impact of Predators on the Activity Patterns of Lemurids and Ceboids

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2006

Journal

Folia Primatologica

Volume

77

Issue

1-2

First Page

143

Last Page

165

URL with Digital Object Identifier

http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000089701

Abstract

The removal, or absence, of predatory species could be a contributing proximate factor to the rise of primate cathemerality. But predators themselves can also be cathemeral, so cathemerality could well be an evolutionary stable strategy. From a comparative perspective, it appears that the effect of predatory species cannot provide a unitary explanation for cathemerality. Varying distributions and population densities of predators, especially raptors, may be key factors in owl monkey (Aotus) cathemerality, but temperature and lunar cycle variation have also been implicated. In Madagascar, while raptors are potential predators of lemur species, the cathemerality of Eulemur species coincides with that of the fossa (Cryptoprocta ferox) , a major predatory threat to lemurs. Thus, lemurid cathemerality may be more parsimoniously explained as an evolutionary stable strategy.

Notes

Vol. 77, no. 1-2 of Folia Primatologica (2006) was a special issue entitled "Cathemerality", the published proceedings of a symposium on cathemerality held at the 2004 International Primatological Congress in Turin, Italy.