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Am J Primatol

Title:Social organization of the Alaotran gentle lemur (Hapalemur griseus alaotrensis)
Author(s):Mutschler, T. Nievergelt, C. M. Feistner, A. T.
Address:Anthropological Institute and Museum, University of Zurich, Switzerland.
Year:2000 Jan
Journal Title:Am J Primatol
Page Number:24-Sep
ISSN/ISBN:0275-2565 (Print). 0275-2565 (Linking)
Abstract:Knowledge of the social organization of lemurs is still limited for most species. Where there is sufficient information, it has been shown that lemur social organization differs in essential points from that of other primates. In the field study reported here, demographic structure and life-history processes were investigated in order to characterize the social organization of the Alaotran gentle lemur (Hapalemur griseus alaotrensis). Data were obtained through captures and observations. Alaotran gentle lemurs were found in small groups of up to nine individuals. Although most groups contained just one breeding female, a substantial proportion of groups (35%) had two breeding females. Therefore, Alaotran gentle lemurs cannot be classed as being organized in monogamous family groups. An extended birth season was found, and groups with two breeding females had significantly higher breeding output per adult than groups with a single adult female. Limited data suggest that females emigrate from their natal group while still subadult, whereas males can stay in the natal group until they are fully grown and disperse as adults. Variability in group composition, significantly higher reproductive output per adult in groups with two breeding females, and delayed dispersal of males suggest that Alaotran gentle lemurs pursue a resource-defense mating strategy, rather than a female-defense mating strategy. The suggestion that extant social lemurs may have evolved from a monogamous system, could explain the differences between lemur social systems and those of other primates.

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Citation: El-Sayed AM. The Pherobase: Database of Pheromones and Semiochemicals. <>.
The Pherobase - Extensive Database of Pheromones and Semiochemicals. Ashraf M. El-Sayed.