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Title: Insect Abundance In Relation To Capuchin (Cebus capucinus) Foraging: Fallback Foods In A Costa Rican Tropical Dry Forest
Author: Mosdossy, Krisztina
Advisor: Fedigan, Linda
Keywords: Ecology;Entomology
Issue Date: 1-May-2013
Abstract: There is a paucity of literature on tropical insect abundance, especially in tropical dry forests, and white-faced capuchin fallback foods have only recently been studied. I predicted that insects overall would be seasonal, but abundant throughout the year and hypothesized that insects are fallback foods in the capuchin diet. I measured insect abundance while simultaneously recording capuchin foraging in a tropical dry forest. I found that overall insect abundance was seasonal, although most Orders and Families that I identified were aseasonal and insects remained abundant throughout the year. Abiotic and biotic factors affected some insect Order and Family abundance patterns. Capuchins consumed insects more frequently during a period of overall food abundance and spent more time foraging extractively on pith and bromeliad leaves, which were consumed more frequently during a period of food scarcity. I conclude that white-faced capuchins likely fall back on pith and bromeliad leaves, not insects.
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