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Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University
Status of urban populations of the longtailed macaque
(Macaca fascicularis) in West Sumatra, Indonesia
Kurnia Ilham, Rizaldi, Jabang Nurdin, and Yamato Tsuji
We studied long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis) populations in Padang, West Sumatra, Indonesia, focusing on the effect of human provisioning on their demography and dietary composition. We conducted a field survey at three sites in the city: Gunung Meru, Gunung Padang, and Gunung Panggilun.
Mean troop size (range 28-68) and infant ratio (range 0.38-1.00) were greater in Gunung Meru, where the macaques have been highly provisioned, than at the other two study sites (troop size 10-15; infant ratio 0.00-0.33).
The macaques at all sites consumed both natural and human foods, but dependence on the latter differed among sites: three-quarters of the diet of macaques in Gunung Meru consisted of human foods, while human foods comprised less than 5% of the macaque diet at the other sites.
The ability of macaques to modify the proportion of human food is a behavioral flexibility that facilitates the survival of the long-tailed macaque in urban habitats.
Without restrictions on provisioning, the degree of dependence of macaques on human foods and population size could increase, especially in Gunung Meru, and human-macaque conflict could escalate.
In order to create an effective management policy for urbanized monkeys, long-term quantitative data on macaque behavior and monitoring of population parameters are required.
2017/04/12 Primate Research Institute