The feeding ecology and dietary overlap in two sympatric primate species, the long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and dusky langur (Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus), in Malaysia

Farhani Ruslin, Ikki Matsuda, Badrul Munir Md. Zain

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2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Knowledge about the feeding ecology and dietary overlap of sympatric primates is essential for understanding how animals avoid or reduce interspecific competition. From April 2014 to March 2015, we investigated the feeding ecologies of two sympatric primates, a hindgut fermenter, the long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and a foregut fermenter, the dusky langur (Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus), in a mixed landscape consisting of urban and agro-forested areas and forest fragments in Malaysia. We collected a total of 5570 and 4029 of feeding records for M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively, using the 10-min scan sampling method. Food availability and seasonal changes in plant species consumed by both study groups were determined by vegetation surveys carried out across an area of 1.6 ha. A total of 113 and 130 plant species were consumed by M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively. Leaves (51%) and fruits (40%) accounted for the majority of the feeding records in T. o. obscurus, whereas fruits (32%) and anthropogenic foods (27%) together with leaves (15%) and insects (6%) accounted for the majority of the feeding records for M. fascicularis. Throughout the year, there were 59 consumed plant species common to both species, and the dietary overlap was the highest for fruits. Although leaves were always more abundant than fruits in our study site, the amount of monthly fruit eating by the two species showed a significant correlation with that of fruit availability. Monthly fruit availability had a positive effect on overall monthly dietary overlap while flower and leaf availability had a negative effect. We showed that fruit was the preferred food resource of two sympatric species with different digestive systems. This could have implications for resource competition, interspecific competition, and niche separation, which should be investigated in more detail.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-50
Number of pages10
JournalPrimates
Volume60
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jan 2019

Fingerprint

Macaca fascicularis
Macaca
Malaysia
Primates
ecology
fruits
fermenters
interspecific competition
leaves
foregut
Trachypithecus
hindgut
sympatry
habitat fragmentation
food availability
niches
digestive system
ingestion
flowers
insects

Keywords

  • Dusky langur
  • Feeding ecology
  • Long-tailed macaque
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

@article{06eac9ac66eb46c8ae3e23af11e053a3,
title = "The feeding ecology and dietary overlap in two sympatric primate species, the long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and dusky langur (Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus), in Malaysia",
abstract = "Knowledge about the feeding ecology and dietary overlap of sympatric primates is essential for understanding how animals avoid or reduce interspecific competition. From April 2014 to March 2015, we investigated the feeding ecologies of two sympatric primates, a hindgut fermenter, the long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and a foregut fermenter, the dusky langur (Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus), in a mixed landscape consisting of urban and agro-forested areas and forest fragments in Malaysia. We collected a total of 5570 and 4029 of feeding records for M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively, using the 10-min scan sampling method. Food availability and seasonal changes in plant species consumed by both study groups were determined by vegetation surveys carried out across an area of 1.6 ha. A total of 113 and 130 plant species were consumed by M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively. Leaves (51{\%}) and fruits (40{\%}) accounted for the majority of the feeding records in T. o. obscurus, whereas fruits (32{\%}) and anthropogenic foods (27{\%}) together with leaves (15{\%}) and insects (6{\%}) accounted for the majority of the feeding records for M. fascicularis. Throughout the year, there were 59 consumed plant species common to both species, and the dietary overlap was the highest for fruits. Although leaves were always more abundant than fruits in our study site, the amount of monthly fruit eating by the two species showed a significant correlation with that of fruit availability. Monthly fruit availability had a positive effect on overall monthly dietary overlap while flower and leaf availability had a negative effect. We showed that fruit was the preferred food resource of two sympatric species with different digestive systems. This could have implications for resource competition, interspecific competition, and niche separation, which should be investigated in more detail.",
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year = "2019",
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AU - Matsuda, Ikki

AU - Md. Zain, Badrul Munir

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N2 - Knowledge about the feeding ecology and dietary overlap of sympatric primates is essential for understanding how animals avoid or reduce interspecific competition. From April 2014 to March 2015, we investigated the feeding ecologies of two sympatric primates, a hindgut fermenter, the long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and a foregut fermenter, the dusky langur (Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus), in a mixed landscape consisting of urban and agro-forested areas and forest fragments in Malaysia. We collected a total of 5570 and 4029 of feeding records for M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively, using the 10-min scan sampling method. Food availability and seasonal changes in plant species consumed by both study groups were determined by vegetation surveys carried out across an area of 1.6 ha. A total of 113 and 130 plant species were consumed by M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively. Leaves (51%) and fruits (40%) accounted for the majority of the feeding records in T. o. obscurus, whereas fruits (32%) and anthropogenic foods (27%) together with leaves (15%) and insects (6%) accounted for the majority of the feeding records for M. fascicularis. Throughout the year, there were 59 consumed plant species common to both species, and the dietary overlap was the highest for fruits. Although leaves were always more abundant than fruits in our study site, the amount of monthly fruit eating by the two species showed a significant correlation with that of fruit availability. Monthly fruit availability had a positive effect on overall monthly dietary overlap while flower and leaf availability had a negative effect. We showed that fruit was the preferred food resource of two sympatric species with different digestive systems. This could have implications for resource competition, interspecific competition, and niche separation, which should be investigated in more detail.

AB - Knowledge about the feeding ecology and dietary overlap of sympatric primates is essential for understanding how animals avoid or reduce interspecific competition. From April 2014 to March 2015, we investigated the feeding ecologies of two sympatric primates, a hindgut fermenter, the long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) and a foregut fermenter, the dusky langur (Trachypithecus obscurus obscurus), in a mixed landscape consisting of urban and agro-forested areas and forest fragments in Malaysia. We collected a total of 5570 and 4029 of feeding records for M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively, using the 10-min scan sampling method. Food availability and seasonal changes in plant species consumed by both study groups were determined by vegetation surveys carried out across an area of 1.6 ha. A total of 113 and 130 plant species were consumed by M. fascicularis and T. o. obscurus, respectively. Leaves (51%) and fruits (40%) accounted for the majority of the feeding records in T. o. obscurus, whereas fruits (32%) and anthropogenic foods (27%) together with leaves (15%) and insects (6%) accounted for the majority of the feeding records for M. fascicularis. Throughout the year, there were 59 consumed plant species common to both species, and the dietary overlap was the highest for fruits. Although leaves were always more abundant than fruits in our study site, the amount of monthly fruit eating by the two species showed a significant correlation with that of fruit availability. Monthly fruit availability had a positive effect on overall monthly dietary overlap while flower and leaf availability had a negative effect. We showed that fruit was the preferred food resource of two sympatric species with different digestive systems. This could have implications for resource competition, interspecific competition, and niche separation, which should be investigated in more detail.

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