lecture 3 bio

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7 Dec 2010
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Anthropology Lecture 3 – Primates Behaviour and Ecology
Goals
-primates differ from mammals
-basic taxonomic characteristics of living primates
-primate ecology and sociology
-main conservation of primates
Primate characteristics
-Primates are mammals (warm-blooded, having hair & feeding milk to its young)
-homoeothermic (maintain body to regulate temperature)
Primates differ from mammals (all of these must apply)
1. grasping hands and feet
2. collarbone (clavicle)
3. radius (bones in wrist) and ulna (joins elbow)
4. forward facing eyes and stereoscopic vision
overlapping of eyes provides depth perception
nerves go from both eyes to brain
-most primates don’t smell as well and they interact with their environment in a different way
Primate Activity Patterns
-nocturnal: active at night (therefore, having large eyes)
-diurnal: active during the day
-crepuscular: active at dawn and dusk (highest point of activity is at sunrise and sundown)
-cathemeral: active anytime of the day or night (for primates where resources are low in area)
Primate Diets
-frugivore: eats only fruit
-folivore: eats only leaves
-insectivore: eats only insects
-faunivore: eats invertebrates and vertebrates
-gummivore: eats tree exudates (ex.sap)
-omnivore: eats everything
-gramirivore: eats small seeds and grass
-schlerocapirory: eats hard seeds
Primate Taxonomy
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Strepsirhine Characteristics
-dental tooth comb (groom selves and others)
-most rhinarium (wet nose Æhelps animal bring in complex bacteria Ægood sense of smell)
-unfused mandibular (jaw; has 2 halves and we can see a wiggly line in between) and frontal
symphases (skull made up of different bones; biologically fused together with no lines in
between)
-Tapetum lucidum (trait which allows them to see better at night; low light focused)
-postorbital bar (bone maintaining eye integral)
-2 subfamilies
1. Lemuroidea
2. Lorisoidea
Lemuroidea
-Madagascar and Comoro islands
-arboreal quadruplets (4 legs to locomote on trees)
-small-bodied species
-nocturnal
-female dominance
-varied diet
-(smallest primate: lemur Æweighs AAA battery x 2)
Lorisoidea
-found throughout Africa, Asia and Southeast Asia
-arboreal quadruplets
-nocturnal
-varied diet
-lorises and galagos Æbabies get licked with toxic protecting them from predators
Haplorine Characteristics (our group)
-dry nose
-retinal fovea; no reflective membrane in eyes (we see colour)
-postorbital closure
-fused mandibular and frontal symphases
-2 infraorders
1. Tarsiiformes
2. Platyrrhini Æneotropical monkeys
3. Catarrhini Æold world monkeys and apes
Tarsiiformes
-found in Central and South America
-small (80 – 130g) ; eye bigger than brain
-relatively large eyes with fused lower leg bones
-entirely faunivorous
-nocturnal
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