Habitat use, home range and foraging preferences of the coati Nasua nasua in a pluvial tropical Atlantic forest area


Beatriz de Mello Beisiegel. Current address: Alameda Inhambu, 76 Vila Verde, CEP 06670-330, Itapevi, SP, Brazil.
E-mail: beatrizb@usp.br


Coatis (genus Nasua) occupy a large range of forested habitats. The aim of this study was to describe the use of habitat by Nasua nasua in a continuous pluvial tropical Atlantic forest area, the Carlos Botelho State Park (CBSP) in south-eastern Brazil. Use of space by N. nasua in the CBSP was characterized by an average home range area for one group of 445 ha by the minimum convex polygon method and 544 ha by the fixed kernel method, which was used across 2 months; the use of trees for foraging and travelling was superior to that reported for N. nasua and Nasua narica until now, being higher in the drier season. The home range of three coati groups shifted during the 3 years of this study; the home range of one habituated group changed by 91%. The proportion of ground foraging increased with the higher availability of soil invertebrates during the rainy season, but cannot be explained solely on the basis of resource availability.