Spider monkeys use high-quality core areas in a tropical dry forest

Authors

  • N. Asensio,

    Corresponding author
    1. Conservation Genetics and Ecology Group, Institute of Molecular Biosciences, Mahidol University, Nakorn Pathon, Thailand
    2. The Monitoring and Surveillance Center for Zoonotic Diseases in Wildlife and Exotic Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Science, Mahidol University, Nakorn Pathon, Thailand
    • Faculty, of Environment and Resource Studies, Mahidol University, Nakorn Pathon, Thailand
    Search for more papers by this author
  • D. Lusseau,

    1. Institute of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Marine Alliance for Science and Technology Scotland, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK
    Search for more papers by this author
  • C. M. Schaffner,

    1. Instituto de Neuroetologia, Universidad Veracruzana, Xalapa, Mexico
    2. Department of Psychology, University of Chester, Chester, UK
    Search for more papers by this author
  • F. Aureli

    1. Instituto de Neuroetologia, Universidad Veracruzana, Xalapa, Mexico
    2. Research Centre in Evolutionary Anthropology and Palaeoecology, School of Natural Sciences and Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK
    Search for more papers by this author

Correspondence

Norberto Asensio, Faculty of Environment and Resource Studies, Mahidol University, 999 Salaya, Puthamonton, Nakorn Pathon 73170, Thailand. Email: norberello@gmail.com

Abstract

Core areas are thought to be critical parts of animal home ranges for sustaining the population, but few studies have tested this important assumption. We examined whether core areas of spider monkeys Ateles geoffroyi had better habitat quality than the rest of their home range (non-core areas). Habitat quality parameters, including density and diversity of food trees, degree of forest maturity and density of sleeping trees in core and non-core areas were analyzed using Moran eigenvector generalized linear model (GLM) filtering using spatial eigenvector mapping to control for spatial autocorrelation. The best fitting GLM revealed that spider monkeys' core areas had higher habitat quality than non-core areas. This study provides quantitative evidence supporting the concept of core areas including the most critical resources for an animal population. In this respect, spider monkeys' core areas are a key to understand their movement ecology and habitat preferences.

Ancillary