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Vigilance in a Cooperatively Breeding Primate.

Stojan-Dolar M, Heymann EW - Int. J. Primatol. (2010)

Bottom Line: As vigilance decreased in proximity of conspecifics and heterospecifics when feeding, and in larger mixed-species groups when resting, we conclude that the predominant function of vigilance in mustached tamarins is predator related.We found no evidence that mustached tamarins monitor group mates to avoid food stealing or aggression.The effect of heterospecifics on individual vigilance suggests that collective vigilance might have been an important incentive in the evolution of tamarin mixed-species groups.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT
Collective vigilance is considered a major advantage of group living in animals. We investigated vigilance behavior in wild mustached tamarins (Saguinus mystax), small, arboreal, cooperatively breeding New World primates that form stable mixed-species groups with saddleback tamarins (Saguinus fuscicollis). We aimed 1) to investigate whether vigilance patterns change according to individual activity and 2) to examine whether there is a social component of vigilance in their cooperative and nonaggressive society. We studied 11 factors that may influence vigilance and used this data to interpret the possible functions of vigilance. We observed 44 individuals in 3 mixed-species and 2 single-species groups of 2 populations that differed in population density and home range sizes. Vigilance changed greatly when individuals were engaged in different activities and individual vigilance was affected by different sets of factors depending on the activity. As vigilance decreased in proximity of conspecifics and heterospecifics when feeding, and in larger mixed-species groups when resting, we conclude that the predominant function of vigilance in mustached tamarins is predator related. However, the absence of the group size effect in very large single-species groups suggests that it may also function to maintain group cohesion. In the population with higher density and smaller home ranges individuals also increased their vigilance in home range overlap areas. We found no evidence that mustached tamarins monitor group mates to avoid food stealing or aggression. The effect of heterospecifics on individual vigilance suggests that collective vigilance might have been an important incentive in the evolution of tamarin mixed-species groups.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Mean percentage of time spent vigilant (± SE) during different activities.
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Fig1: Mean percentage of time spent vigilant (± SE) during different activities.

Mentions: Vigilance levels varied significantly between activities (GLMM: F(4,2416) = 1697.8, p < 0.001; Fig. 1) and were highest during resting (88.1 ± 0.3%), followed by passive grooming (40.5 ± 3.5%), feeding (33.2 ± 0.8%), self-grooming (31.8 ± 3.4%), and active grooming (4.4 ± 0.5%).Fig. 1


Vigilance in a Cooperatively Breeding Primate.

Stojan-Dolar M, Heymann EW - Int. J. Primatol. (2010)

Mean percentage of time spent vigilant (± SE) during different activities.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2819658&req=5

Fig1: Mean percentage of time spent vigilant (± SE) during different activities.
Mentions: Vigilance levels varied significantly between activities (GLMM: F(4,2416) = 1697.8, p < 0.001; Fig. 1) and were highest during resting (88.1 ± 0.3%), followed by passive grooming (40.5 ± 3.5%), feeding (33.2 ± 0.8%), self-grooming (31.8 ± 3.4%), and active grooming (4.4 ± 0.5%).Fig. 1

Bottom Line: As vigilance decreased in proximity of conspecifics and heterospecifics when feeding, and in larger mixed-species groups when resting, we conclude that the predominant function of vigilance in mustached tamarins is predator related.We found no evidence that mustached tamarins monitor group mates to avoid food stealing or aggression.The effect of heterospecifics on individual vigilance suggests that collective vigilance might have been an important incentive in the evolution of tamarin mixed-species groups.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT
Collective vigilance is considered a major advantage of group living in animals. We investigated vigilance behavior in wild mustached tamarins (Saguinus mystax), small, arboreal, cooperatively breeding New World primates that form stable mixed-species groups with saddleback tamarins (Saguinus fuscicollis). We aimed 1) to investigate whether vigilance patterns change according to individual activity and 2) to examine whether there is a social component of vigilance in their cooperative and nonaggressive society. We studied 11 factors that may influence vigilance and used this data to interpret the possible functions of vigilance. We observed 44 individuals in 3 mixed-species and 2 single-species groups of 2 populations that differed in population density and home range sizes. Vigilance changed greatly when individuals were engaged in different activities and individual vigilance was affected by different sets of factors depending on the activity. As vigilance decreased in proximity of conspecifics and heterospecifics when feeding, and in larger mixed-species groups when resting, we conclude that the predominant function of vigilance in mustached tamarins is predator related. However, the absence of the group size effect in very large single-species groups suggests that it may also function to maintain group cohesion. In the population with higher density and smaller home ranges individuals also increased their vigilance in home range overlap areas. We found no evidence that mustached tamarins monitor group mates to avoid food stealing or aggression. The effect of heterospecifics on individual vigilance suggests that collective vigilance might have been an important incentive in the evolution of tamarin mixed-species groups.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus