Demographic influences on the hunting behavior of chimpanzees

Citation
Jc. Mitani et Dp. Watts, Demographic influences on the hunting behavior of chimpanzees, AM J P ANTH, 109(4), 1999, pp. 439-454
Citations number
60
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Sociology & Antropology","Experimental Biology
Journal title
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY
ISSN journal
0002-9483 → ACNP
Volume
109
Issue
4
Year of publication
1999
Pages
439 - 454
Database
ISI
SICI code
0002-9483(199908)109:4<439:DIOTHB>2.0.ZU;2-3
Abstract
We investigated hunting in an unusually large community of wild chimpanzees at Ngogo in the Kibale National Park, Uganda. Aspects of predation were re corded with respect to the prey, the predators, and hunting episodes. Durin g 23 months of observation, the Ngogo chimpanzees caught 128 prey items fro m four primate and three ungulate species. Chimpanzees preyed selectively o n immature red colobus primarily during group hunts, with adult males makin g the majority of kills. Party size and composition were significant predic tors of the probability that chimpanzees would hunt and of their success du ring attempts. Chimpanzees were more likely to hunt red colobus if party si ze and the number of male hunters were large; party size and the number of male hunters were also significantly larger in successful compared with uns uccessful hunts. The Ngogo chimpanzees did not appear to hunt cooperatively , but reciprocal meat-sharing typically took place after kills. Hunts occur red throughout the year, though there was some seasonality as displayed by periodic hunting binges. The extremely high success rate and large number o f kills made per successful hunt are the two most striking aspects of preda tion by the Ngogo chimpanzees. We compare currently available observations of chimpanzee hunting behavior across study sites and conclude that the lar ge size of the Ngogo community contributes to their extraordinary hunting s uccess. Demographic differences between groups are likely to contribute to other patterns of interpopulation variation in chimpanzee predation. (C) 19 99 Wiley-Liss, Inc.