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La edad y la actividad relacionada con el sexo en el pizote de nariz blanca (Nasua narica)
Age and sex-related activity in white-nosed coatis (Nasua narica)
The time allocation theory mentions that sociality increases an individuals fitness because it cannot efficiently forage and watch for predators at the same time on its own, but if in a group vigilance can be shared and time to forage and participate in other activities can be increased, therefore increasing fitness (Caraco, 1979). White-nose coatis,Nasua narica, (Procyonidae) are diurnal and social mammals. Adult females and juveniles live together in bands whereas males are solitary and only join a band when mating. Because and individual cannot perform two activities at once, I studied how age and sex influence how coatis spend their time. I predicted that females would spend the most time as vigilance to protect their young, juveniles would spend the most time foraging to increase growth, and males would spend less time watching out for predators and more time foraging because predators are not as big a threat to them. A band of between 10 and 14 and several males frequented a garbage pit close to the Estacin Biolgica, Monteverde, Costa Rica. I recorded each individuals behavior every minute. Adult females, adult males, and juveniles were recorded foraging, fighting, playing, grooming, climbing trees, resting, looking around (vigilance), and staying out of view (out of sight). A chi-square test was used to show that females were the most vigilant (32%) and that males foraged the most (60%). A large amount of time was spent in trees by females (30%) and juveniles, (56%) but not by males (4%). There were low observations of coatis fighting (4%), playing (3%), grooming (1%), and resting (1%). The chi-square test showed that all of the activities that the coatis participated in, and the amount of time they spent was significantly different. The results conclude that females are more vigilant to protect their young from predators. Males will spend more time foraging. And juveniles will spend the most time in trees to avoid predators, and foraging to increase growth.
La teora de la asignacin del tiempo menciona que la sociabilidad aumenta la aptitud de un individuo, ya que no pueden de manera eficiente forrajear y ver a los depredadores al mismo tiempo por su propia cuenta, pero, si pueden compartir en una vigilia de grupo y el tiempo para alimentarse y participar en otras actividades se puede incrementar por lo tanto aumentar la aptitud (Caraco, 1979). Los pizotes de nariz blanca, Nasua narica, (Procyonidae) son mamferos diurnos y sociales. Las hembras adultas y jvenes viven juntas en las bandas mientras que los machos son solitarios y slo se unen a una banda cuando se aparean. Debido a que el individuo no puede realizar dos actividades al mismo tiempo, he estudiado cmo la edad y el sexo influyen como los pizotes pasan su tiempo. Yo predije que las hembras pasan la mayor parte del tiempo vigilando para proteger a sus cras, los juveniles pasan ms tiempo alimentndose para aumentar el crecimiento, y los machos pasan menos tiempo mirando hacia fuera para los depredadores y ms tiempo de forrajeo, porque los depredadores no son una amenaza tan grande para ellos. Un grupo entre 10 y 14 machos frecuentaba un basurero cerca de la Estacin Biolgica de Monteverde, Costa Rica. Grab el comportamiento de cada individuo cada minuto. Las hembras adultas, machos adultos y juveniles se registraron forrajeando, luchando, jugando, asendose, trepando a los rboles, descansando, mirando a su alrededor (vigilancia), y mantenindose fuera de vista. Se utiliz una prueba de chi-cuadrado para mostrar que las hembras fueron las ms atentas (32%) y que los machos se alimentaban ms (60%). Las hembras gastaron una gran cantidad de tiempo en los rboles (30%) y menores (56%), pero no por los machos (4%). Hubo observaciones bajos de pizotes luchando (4%), jugando (3%), asendose (1%), y descansando (1%). La prueba de chi-cuadrado mostr que todas las actividades que los pizotes participaron, y la cantidad de tiempo que pasaron fueron significativamente diferentes. Los resultados concluyen que las hembras son ms vigilantes para proteger a sus cras de los depredadores. Los machos pasan ms tiempo forrajeando y los jvenes pasan ms tiempo en los rboles para evitar a los depredadores, y buscando alimento para aumentar el crecimiento.
Text in English.
Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Monteverde Zone
Monteverde Biological Station (Costa Rica)
Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Zona de Monteverde
Estacin Biolgica de Monteverde (Costa Rica)
Tropical Ecology Summer 2010
Ecologa Tropical Verano 2010
Pizotes de nariz blanca
t Monteverde Institute : Tropical Ecology
Age and Sex Related Activity in White Nosed Coatis ( Nasua narica ) Rachel Munro University of Tampa, Department of Natural Sciences _______________________________________________________________________ ABSTRACT The time allocation theory mentions that efficiently forage and watch for predators at the same time on its own, but if in a group vigilance can be shared and time to forage and participate in other activities can be increased, theref ore increasing fitness (Caraco, 1979). White nose coatis, Nasua narica (Procyonidae) are diurnal and social mammals. Adult females and juveniles live together in bands whereas males are solitary and only join a band when mating. Because and individual cann ot perform two activities at once, I studied how age and sex influence how coatis spend their time. I predicted that females would spend the most time as vigilance to protect their young, juveniles would spend the most time foraging to increase growth, and males would spend less time watching out for predators and more time foraging because predators are not as big as a threat to them. A band of between 10 and 14 and several males frequented a garbage pit close to the Estacin Biolgica, Monteverde, Costa R and juveniles were recorded foraging, fighting, playing, grooming, climbing trees, resting, looking around (vigilance), and staying out of view (out of site). A chi square test was used to show that females were the most vigilant (32%) and that males foraged the most (60%). A large amount of time was spent in trees by females (30%) and juveniles, (56%) but not by males (4%). There were low observations of coatis fighting (4 %), playing (3%), grooming (1%), and resting (1%). The chi square test showed that all of the activities that the coatis participated in, and the amount of time they spent was significantly different. The results conclude that females are vigilant the mos t to protect their young from predators. Males will spend more time foraging. And juveniles will spend the most time in trees to avoid predators, and foraging to increase growth. INTRODUCTION Time allocation theory suggests that animals can only per form one activity at a time, and that time budgets maximize fitness (Caraco, 1979). Animals must perform a variety of activities to assure their survival and maximize fecundity, including foraging, courtship, avoiding predators and caring for young (Caraco 1979). Coatis, like other social animals, must balance activities like: foraging for food, watching out for predators, resting, grooming, and taking care of their young (Kaufmann, 1982). How an animal spends its time largely determines its survival and f ecundity. For example, in coatis it is most beneficial for an individual to be a part of a band (Kaufmann, 1982). If in a group the job of looking out for predators is divided among all of the members. Less time is spent on vigilance, which means that it can be spent pursuing other activities that can increase its fitness such as foraging or reproducing (Caraco, 1979). White nosed coatis are the most social members of the raccoon family (Kaufmann, 1982). The adult females and their young of up to two years live in bands of four to thirty individuals (Kaufmann, 1982). Band members are normally related, but not always (Kaufmann, 1982 and Gompper, 1997). Adult males are excluded except for brief periods during the breeding season (Kaufmann, 1982) At other times, adult females
chase them away, though males tend to stick to the fringes of groups and are never far away (Kaufmann, 1982). The band forages together, and individuals divide their time between foraging, resting, etc. Social behaviors, like grooming and fighting, are also important (Kaufmann, 1982). Fighting is usually around food and can be more intense between less closely related individuals in the band (Gompper, 1997). In addition, non related band members usually spend more time away from the band (Gompper, 1997). Coatis have few predators as adults, but are vulnerable as juveniles. Predators can include raptors, boas, and cats. (Kaufmann, 1983) Predation rates are higher on solitary coatis than coatis living in bands. (Ha ss and Valenzuela, 2002) Adult females living in bands may forage with juveniles in the center of the group, share vigilance between the adult females, sound alarms and mob predators. All of these behaviors show how predation has shaped social behaviors, a nd the importance the survival of their young are to female coatis because they spend energy watching out for predators instead of using that time to pursue other activities that would increase their personal fitness (Hass and Valenzuela, 2002). Males wil l constantly spend time attempting to rejoin the band whenever possible (Kaufmann, 1982). It is beneficial to be a member of the band because vigilance is shared among the members; along with mutual grooming that rids the individual of harmful ecoparasites (Grompper and Kinsley, 1992). In this experiment I observed how adult females, juveniles, and solitary males spent their time, and how it differed between each other. I hypothesized that adult females would spend more time being vigilant than juvenil es because they are more experienced and have learned to be wary of predators. I also predicted that juveniles would spend the majority of their time foraging for food and playing because eating and growing is very important in this stage of their life, an d playing helps the juveniles learn how to socialize with one another and to find their place in the band. METHODS AND MATERIALS Study Organism Once a male has reached sexual maturity, about two years of age, it will leave the band and live a solit ary life. Males will only rejoin a band during the breeding season, one month early in the dry season. (Kaufmann, 1983) During mating one male will join a band and stay will them for the entire mating season, and copulates with several of the females. The male is submissive with the female members, and participates in all of the If a band is approached by a solitary male outside of the breeding season the male will re ceive aggression from the adult females, and several females will chase it away. After mating, the pregnant females will leave the band. It will make a nest in the trees, and give birth to their young. (Kaufmann, 1983) During this time the female will spen d time caring for its newborn young and foraging for its self on its own. Once their young are old enough to keep up with the rest of the group, the female and the juveniles will rejoin the band. Study Site My site was located several hundred meters from the Estacin Biolgica, Monteverde
site was located in disturbed secondary forest with a close proximity to primary forest. The Holdridge life zone of the area was P remontane Moist/Wet Transition. The experiment took place for two weeks in late July. Behaviors Foraging was defined as searching for, consuming, or moving the location of food. Fighting was defined as an individual lunging, hissing, biting, scratc hing, or aggressively chasing another individual. Playing was defined as non aggressively chasing or wrestling and running back and forth or up and down objects with no visible purpose. Grooming was defined as licking or biting itself, or giving and/or rec eiving licks or non aggressive bites from another individual. Climbing trees was defined as being located in a tree, and moving from branch to branch or from tree to tree. Vigilance was defined as looking around, making territorial grunts when something un wanted was near, or retreating. Out of site was defined as the coati was out of my line of site, so any activity that the individual may have been doing is unknown. Behavioral Observations When coatis were observed the individuals were placed into one of three groups: adult female, adult male, and juveniles. A coati was identified as and adult female if it was of full grown size and in a band, and testicles were not observed. It is to be noted that it was not always possible to see if testicle were present if there was a large number of individuals, or if it was moving around too much, but if the other two factors were present it was still identified as an adult female. An adult male was identified if the coati was full grown, solitary, and testicles were present. Juveniles were identified if the individuals were not full grown and appeared to be members of a band. It is to be noted not to confuse a group and a band. A group is a collection of same individuals based on their age and sex. A band is an adult female group and a juvenile group that cohabitate with each other. The total number of individuals in each group was recorded for each observation period of one minute. Using a stopwatch, I scored the activity of every individual I could see at each minute mark. Activities between minute marks were not scored. Activities included: foraging, fighting, playing, grooming, climbing trees, resting, vigilant, and out of site. After all one minute observations had been recorded the total count for the acti vities in each group was divided by the total number of members in the group to find the average amount time a group spent on the activity. RESULTS There were a total of 3757 observations. (females=1994, males=282, juveniles=1481) The three gro ups were different in that males were observed foraging the most, females foraged the least, and juveniles foraged for a fair amount of time. A chi square test showed that adult females spent less time foraging than expected (obs. 215, exp. 242). Adult mal es spent more foraging (obs. 47, exp. 28), and juveniles spent almost the same amount of time foraging as expected (obs. 155, exp. 147). The amount of time a group spent foraging (figure 1.1) was significant (d.f. =2, critical value=5.99, x 2 =16.34). The t hree differ in tree climbing in that juveniles spent the most time in trees, females spent less time in trees than juveniles, and males spent the least amount of time in trees. Adu lt
females (obs. 200, exp. 286 males (obs. 3, exp. 33) spent less time climbing trees than expected, and juveniles spent more (obs. 289, exp. 173). Time spent in trees (figure 1.2) was significantly different for the three (d.f. =2, critical value=5.99, x 2 =130.19). The three were different in vigilance or looking around in th at females were the most vigilant, males spent a fair amount of time being vigilant, and juveniles spent the least time being vigilant. Less time was spent looking around (vigilance) than expected in juveniles (obs. 51, exp. 100). Adult females spent more time than expected (obs. 216, exp. 166), and adult males spent about the same amount of time as expected (obs. 19, exp. 20). The time spent being vigilant (figure 1.3) was significantly different for the three (d.f. =2, critical value=5.99, x 2 =39.12). Juve niles spent the most time out of site out of the three followed by males. Females spent the least time out of site. Adult females spent less time out of site than expected (obs. 1327, exp. 1451). Adult males spent more time out of site the expected (obs. 2 03, exp.170), and juveniles also spent more time out of site than expected (obs. 967, exp. 876). The amount of time out of site (figure 1.4) was significantly different for the three (d.f. =2, critical value=5.99, x 2 =26.55). The other activities were not t ested due to the low number of observations recorded. Adult females spent about as much time being vigilant (n = 216) as foraging (n = 215). These two behaviors comprised about 2/3 of the observations observed (not counting those times the coati was out of sight). Only nominally less frequent was climbing trees (n = 200), suggesting that females spend nearly equal amounts of time looking around, foraging and climbing. Fighting was observed only occasionally (n= 25) and females were out of site frequ ently (n = 1327). Adult females spent time grooming (n = 6) and resting (n = 5), and no time playing (n = 0). Excluding the out of site activity females were observed foraging and looking around for 32% of their time. They spent 30% climbing trees, 4% figh ting, 1% grooming and resting, and 0% playing. The amount of time that adult females spent on each activity (figure 2.1) was significantly different (d.f. =7, critical value=14.1, x 2 =74.52). Adult males spent the most time foraging (N=47), exclud ing out of site. They spent a fair amount of time looking around (N=29). A small amount of time was spent in trees (N=3), and there were no observations of males fighting, playing, grooming, and resting (N=0). Males did spend a large amount of time out of site (N=203), but by omitting this activity they spent 60% of their time foraging, 36% looking around, 4% in the trees, and 0% fighting, playing, grooming, and resting. The interesting trend here is that males spend more relative time foraging than females do. Likewise, they spend relatively less time in vigilance. The relative amount of time that the adult males spent on each of the activities (figure 2.2) was significantly different (d.f. =7, critical value=14.1, x 2 =45.75). Juveniles spent the mo st time climbing trees (N=287), excluding out of site (N=967). Juveniles also spent a good amount of time foraging (N=151), and a little bit as looking around (N=51). There were very few observations of juveniles playing (N=13), grooming (N=5), and resting (N=1), and there were no observations of them fighting (N=0). Omitting out of site, juveniles spent 56% of their time climbing trees, 29% foraging, 10% looking around, 3% playing, 1% grooming and resting, and 0% fighting. The interesting trends here are t hat the juveniles spend nearly all of their time climbing and lots more of their time foraging than in other behaviors. The juveniles also spent less time as vigilance, unlike the males and female who spent more time being vigilant. The time that
juvenile s spent of each of activity (figure 2.3) was significant (d.f. =7, critical value=14.1, x 2 =104.61). Figure 1.1. Amount of time spent foraging by White nosed coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage pit near the Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. C ompared to males and juveniles, adult females spent less time foraging (obs. 215, exp. 242) than what was expected. Adult male coatis (obs. 47, exp. 28) and juvenile coatis (obs. 155, exp. 147) spend more time foraging. Chi square suggests groups are signi ficantly different (d.f. =2, critical value=599,x 2 =16.34). Figure 1.2. Amount of time spent climbing trees in White nosed Coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage pit near the Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. Compared to juveniles adult female co atis (obs. 200, exp. 286) and adult male coatis (obs. 3, exp. 33) spent less time climbing trees than what was expected. Juveniles (obs. 289, exp. 173) spent more time climbing trees than what was expected. The chi square test suggests that the groups we re significantly different. (d.f. =2, critical value=5.99, x 2 =13.91).
Figure 1.3. Amount of time spent looking around (vigilance) in White nosed Coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage pit near the Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. Compared to ad ult males and juveniles adult female coatis spent more time being vigilant (obs. 216, exp. 166) than what was expected. Juveniles spent less time being vigilant (obs. 51, exp. 100) than what was expected, and adult male coatis spent close to the same amou nt of time of being vigilant (obs. 19, exp. 20) of what was expected. The chi square test suggests that the three groups were significantly different (d.f. =2, critical value= 5.99, x 2 = 39.12). Figure 1.4. Amount of time spent out of site in White nose d Coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage pit near Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. Compared to adult males and juveniles adult female coatis spent less time out of site (obs. 1327, exp. 1451) than what was expected. Adult male coatis (obs. 203, exp. 1 70) and juveniles (obs. 967, exp. 876) spent more time out of site than what was expected. The chi square test suggests that the three groups were significantly different. (d.f. =2, critical value=5.99, x 2 =26.55).
Figure 2.1 Activity budgets for adult female White nosed Coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage pit near Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. Compared to the other activities adult female coatis spent less time foraging (obs. 215, exp. 245), climbing trees (obs. 200,exp. 289), and out of sit e (obs.1327, exp. 1463) than what was expected. They spent more time fighting (obs. 25, exp. 14) and being vigilant (obs. 216, exp. 168) than what was expected. They spent close to the same amount of time grooming (obs. 6, exp. 5) and resting (obs. 5, exp. 4) of what was expected, and no amount of time playing (obs. 0, exp. 8), which was not expected. The chi square test that the time spent on each activity was significantly different (d.f. =7, critical value= 14.1, x 2 =74.52). Figure 2.2 Activity budgets for adult male White nosed Coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage near Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. Compare to the other activities adult male coatis spent more time
foraging (obs. 47, exp. 31), and out of site (obs. 203, exp. 188) than what were expected. They spent less time climbing trees (obs. 3, exp. 37) than what was expected. They spent close to the same amount of time being vigilant (obs. 29, exp. 21) of what was expected, and they spent no amount of time fighting (obs. 0, exp. 2), playing (obs. 0, exp. 1), grooming (obs. 0, exp. 1), and resting (obs. 0, exp. which was not expected. The chi square test suggests that the time spent on each activity was significantly different (d.f. =7, critical value=14.1, x 2 =45.75). Figure 2.3 Activit y budgets for juvenile White nosed Coatis ( Nasua narica ) around a garbage pit near Monteverde Cloud Forest, Costa Rica. Compared to the other activities juvenile coatis spent more time climbing trees (obs. 289, exp. 195) Than what was expected, and they s pent less time being vigilant (obs. 51, exp. 113) than what was expected. They spent about the same amount of timeforaging (obs. 155, exp. 165), playing (obs. 13, exp. 5), grooming (obs. 5, exp. 4), and resting (obs. 1, exp. 4) of what was expected. They s pent no amount of time fighting (obs. 0, exp. 9) which was not expected. The chi square test suggests that the amount of time spent on each activity was significantly different(d.f. =7, critical value=14.1, x 2 =104.61). Additional Observations Addit ional observations were also recorded that were not subject to statistical analyses. The coatis would always forage in the pit where the freshest food was dumped. Whenever a coati was spooked it would retreat into the forest and climb up a tree. This actio n was observed in all of the groups. All of the coatis were observed foraging on the ground, and no where else. Fighting was rare and only happened between females. The dispute was usually over food, and the altercation was always brief. Adult fem ale coatis were observed performing different techniques on how they were foraging and watching for predators (vigilance). On several occasions a band was observed foraging. First one or two adult females would enter the garbage pit alone, forage by themse lves for about a minute. Then the female would leave, and return with other females and juveniles. One female would then enter the pit first with juveniles following behind her. The other females stayed at the top of the pit looking around, and would then descend into the pit with the juveniles one at a time. The whole band would forage together in the pit except for one or two females that would remain at the top of the pit and not forage, but were vigilant. On other occasions it was observed that only
on e or two females were foraging in the pit by themselves, and other females were at the top of the pit looking around. The female foraging in the pit would only do so for a short time; she would then climb out of the pit with a scrap of food in her mouth, a nd leave. The female that was stationed at the top of the pit would would then enter the pit and forage while another female would come and stay on vigilance. The action was then repeated by leaving with a scrap of food, and another taking her place. Occas ionally a juvenile was seen with a few females entering the pit but it was rare, and few juveniles were seen but heard in the forest close by. Juveniles were never seen foraging without the accompany of an adult female throughout the entire data collectio n period. On many occasions a solitary male would approach the garbage pit while a band was foraging. The male would sometimes hesitate before entering the pit, but would eventually enter the pit on the opposite side of the band, and forage by itself away from the band. Adult males would have to forage for garbage that was dumped previous days before when a band was foraging at the same time, because the band was foraging on the most recently dumped garbage. Sometimes a male was observed approaching a band while foraging. The females in the band usually tolerated his presence, and did not show aggression towards him until he was in close physical contact. At that point he would be chased away by females until he retreated several meters away from the b and. Solitary males would also show less vigilance towards me while I was observing. On one occasion a male approached me at close proximity. One several other occasions a male would watch me from a tree or tall grasses. DISCUSSION Excluding the o ut of site activity. The coatis were observed foraging, climbing trees, and being vigilant the most. More adult females were observed foraging than juveniles, and adult males were observed foraging the most. Juveniles may have been foraging less than the f emales because it might have been riskier for juveniles to come out of the forest. The observations of where females took food from the pit, and taking it into the forest may have been for the juveniles that were hiding. Males were observed foraging less t han the females than juveniles because females and juveniles travel together, and can overtake the trash pit, making it hard for a male to forage. Males may also be intimidated to approach the pit while a band is foraging due to being on the receiving end 1962, in Ideris 2001) that stated coatis spend about 90% of their time during the day forag ing. Although a difference in interpertation may be relevent here. The other authors could say that all of my observations counted as foraging due to the proximity of the trash pit eventhough I did not. But another possible reason for this outcome could b e that their observations took place in the dry season, Dec. in a seasonal dry tropical forest in Barro Colorado Island, Panama, (Gompper and Krinsley, 1992) where food is scarce at that time of year. My observations took place in the wet season, July, in a wet tropical where food is more prevalent. Because food is in a greater abundance, the coatis do not need to spend as much time searching for food. The trash pit also provides a constant, reliable food source so it eliminates the time it takes to
search for food. Because the food gets dumped into the pit year round, the coatis foraging behavior may not change during the dry season as well. A large number of juveniles were observed climbing trees. This could be because it is safer for the juveniles to be in the trees because they are out of reach of predators. Females were also seen climbing trees with juveniles through not as many. Females were probably seen in the trees because it gives them a high vantage poin t, and they are able to seen anything in close proximity including potential predators. Another reason that more juveniles were seen in the trees is because they could still be learning how to climb trees, and may not be allowed onto the ground until they have mastered the skill. It is possible that climbing trees is an important skill to have because a coati will have to be able to quickly escape from a predator by climbing up a tree. The large number of observations of females and juveniles in trees may a lso mean the band is moving from one place to another, and it might be safer to travel by tree than land. Also if the band is not foraging then there may be no real reason from them to be on the ground, it is possible that it is much safer for them because There were few observations of males in trees. This does not mean that males spend less time in trees, but because they travel alone perhaps they are able to go by unnoticed, unlike a noisy band of females and juveniles with many individuals. Out of the three groups adult females showed the most vigilance. This was most likely because they are protecting their young who are probably more vunerable to predators. The females displayed several str ategies to protect the band from predator. One was when a female would stay at the top of the garbage pit while the rest of the band foraged. That female could have posed as a look out, and watch for predators while the group ate. If a predator approached she could alert the group, and the band could escape. Another method observed was one or two females foraging while others posed as lookouts. The foraging female would take food from the pit and carry it into the forest, and then trade positions with the f emales on guard. Because no juveniles were observed, but heard it is assumed that the females were bringing food back to the juveniles that were hiding in the forest. The female probably did not bring the juveniles out because it may have posed as too much of a danger to them to be out in the open. Juveniles did not show vigilance as much of the females because they are still learning about dangers. They also do not need to spend the energy of being vigilant when the have the females doing it for them inste ad they can focus that energy on foraging, which it is most important for them to be eating as much as possible in this stage in their life, so they can grow to become strong, healthy adults. The solitary males were less vigilant than the females and the j uveniles. In fact they showed interest in my presence, and would approach or watch me from treetops. Males may be less vigilant because they do not have any young to look after, and because of their size they have few predators to worry about. This may all ow the males to move about with less fear, and to boldly investigate new things around them. Out of site was the largest recorded activity. This activity does not tell much, it just indicates that some coatis previously observed were not seen while ot her coatis were observed. The out of site coatis could have been doing any of the other activities. Activities that got low observations such as: grooming, playing, and resting might have taken place at this time. Because they had taken refuge in the fores t, and they could leisurely take part in these activities in a safe and relaxed environment.
Grooming each other is an important social behavior among White nosed Coatis. Not only does it remove harmful ectoparasites from each other but consuming b lood filled ticks has nutritional benefits (McClearn, 1992). Further, it is an important bonding time for the band and reinforces their dependence on each other. Although there were few observations on grooming, this activity might have been more common a t night. mutualist behavior between tapirs and coatis, he found that coatis would remove ticks from tapirs. (McClearn, 1992) The behavior only happened at night, and i f coatis only participated in grooming activities at night then the mutualist behavior would not exist in the daytime. This theory may seem far feched because tapirs are nocturnal, and that could have something to do with, but it is still something to cons ider, and investigating what activities coatis do during the nighttime would be interesting. Resting most likely happened at night as well since coatis are diurnal. Coatis also sleep in trees which would have made finding them difficult. Fighting was rare, and it was only observed in the adult female. In all of the occasions the fighting was short and the issues was over food. My observations on fighting is females, and that the encounter was brief. No aggression was shown towards juveniles. form of dominance of one individual in the band (Ideris, 2001), but it did follow Kaufman (Kaufman, 1982). My observations on how a band would react to an approaching solitary male did not essive to any adult males that are in the vicinity of the band outside of the mating season. (Kaufmann 1962, in Gompper and Krinsley 1992) Kaufmann found that out of 63 encounters 55 ended with males being aggressively excluded, 10 ended in actual fights, and only 3 ended with the males being allowed to feed close to the band. My observations agree with (in Grompper and Krinsley 1992). In my observations adult males were a llowed to approach, and feed close to the band. If the male overstepped his boundary and came too close a female would chase him until he was a preferred distance away. The reason for ful, and there is no competition between each other. The approaching male may also have been a previous member of the band when he was a juvenile, and the band has more tolerance towards hat young adult males of about three years of age were allowed to join a band for a extended period of time but only if the males were related to the band that they were associating with because the males probably will not bother the females about mating ( Grompper and Krinsley, 1992). This behavior is possible in my study, because every time a band was observed the adults were automatically labeled as females because external genitalia was never observed, but it is possible that some adult males were with t he band and were incorrectly identified. Although this outcome is highly unlikely. Another reason why males are usually excluded from the band is because they are known to prey on or harm the juveniles (Russell 1981, in Grompper and Krinsley 1992, and De L a Rosa and Nocke 2000). But if the male poses no threat to the juveniles, there is no competition for food,
and they will not bother the females then there is no reason not to let the male join. Also young related males might be more tolerated because they are smaller in size and not likely to attack their younger relatives. The male may also have joined the band during the mating season, and some of the juveniles may be his offspring, therefore he does not want to attack his own young. It has been noted th at after a female gives birth she allows the father to join them for a short period of time, so that he can recognize his offspring. (De La Rosa and Nocke,2000) This is beneficial, so that the male will not attack his offspring in the future. My data may be skewed due to my presence. To the coatis I was a potential threat to them, so they were always wary when I was around. I feel that if I would have been able to observe the coatis without my presence being know then I would have recieve more conslusi ve data because they would not have to spend energy being constantly focused on me, and I would have been able to observe how they act more naturally. Further research where the observer is not noticed by the coatis would give better data on the amount of time they spent being vigilant and participating in other activities. Overall my results did show that the time allication theory did apply to White nosed coatis, and that age and sex to determine how much time they spend on each activity.. Their soc ial behavior and interaction with one another can differ from individuals, bands, regions, and the time of year. Although much as been reported on the animals there is still a lot that is unknown about them, and the reasons behind their behaviors. Many mor e studies can be explored to unlock the mysteries of the most social members of the raccoon family. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank the Rodrguez Garca family for allowing me to stay with them, and providing me meals during the duration of my res earch. The Estacin Biolgica for allowing me to use their facilities. The Hotel Estabol because although illegally dumping garbage into the rain forest is horrible, it provided a good site to study coatis, but they should still be ashamed of themselves. I sleep at night. Karen Masters, Pablo, Moncho, and Raquel for answering any random questions that I had, especially Moncho when my figures would not show up on my powerpoint the night before my symposium. Alan Masters for advisi ng me on my project, and giving an immense amount of help on writing this report. He returned my rough draft and it looked like my paper had been stabbed multiple times. It was a bloody mess with all of the red comments, but I know that when Alan assulted my paper it was only to improve my writing and make me a better biologist. CIEE for putting together this fantastic program that has forever changed my life. The rest of the CIEE posse who put up with my coati obsession, and always made me laugh. My parent s, Becky and Bursell Munro, who not only gave me life, but also always providing guidance, love, and support, and for paying for this trip of course. Thank you mom and dad! But most of all I give thanks to the blessed rain forest. Its beauty and magic has touched my heart, and the heart of others, and I can only hope that the homo sapiean wonderful place on Earth. Pura Vida! LITURAURE CITED Caraco, Thomas. 1979. Time budgeting and group size: a test of theory. E cological Society of America. 60(30): 618 627. De La Rosa, L.C., C.C. Nocke. 2000. A Guide to The Carnivores of Central America. : 78 88. Gompper, E. M., J. L. Gittleman, and R. K. Wayne. 1997. Genetic relatedness, coalitions and Social Behavio r of white nosed coatis, Nasua narica Animal Behavior 53: 781 797. Gompper, E.M., J.S. Kinsley. 1992. Variation in social behavior of adult male coatis ( Nasua narica ) in Panama. Biotropica 24(2a): 216 219.
Hass, C. C., D. Valenzuela. 2002. Anti pr edator benefits of group living in white nosed coatis ( Nasua narica ). Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 51: 570 578. Ideris, J.A., 2001. Foraging behavior and aggression in white nosed coatis, Nasua narica Tropical and Conservation C.I.E.E spring 2001. pp.189 199. Kaufmann, J.H. 1983. Nasua narica (Pizote, Coati). In: Costa Rican Natural History, D.H. Janzen, ed. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, pp.478 480. Kaufmann. J.H. 1962. Ecology and the social behavior of the coat i, Nasua narica on Barro Colorado Island, Panama. Univ. Publ. Zool. 60: 95 222. McClearn, D., 1992. The rise and fall of a mutualism? Coatis, tapirs, and ticks on Barro Colorado Island, Panam. Biotropica 24(2a): 220 222. Russell, J.K., 1981. Exclusion of adult male coatis from social groups: protection from predation. J. Mammal. 62: 206 208.