Investigations of coevolutionary relationships between plants and the animals that disperse their seeds suggest that disperser-plant interactions are likely shaped by diffuse, rather than species-to-species, coevolution. We studied the role of dietary plasticity in shaping the potential for diffuse coevolution by comparing dietary fruit preferences and seed dispersal by 3 species of spider monkeys (Ateles spp.) in 4 moist forests in Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, and Surinam. In all forests, spider monkeys were highly frugivorous and preyed upon seeds of few species. We estimated dietary use of fruiting taxa based on absolute consumption and preference, which accounts for resource availability. Of the 59 genera that comprised the 20 most frequently consumed genera summed in each forest, only 3—Brosimum (Moraceae), Cecropia (Cecropiaceae) and Virola (Myristicaceae)—ranked within the top 20 at every forest. Most genera were within the 20 most frequently consumed at only 1 or 2 forests. Based on preferences, only 4 genera ranked in the 20 most-preferred in all 4 forests: Brosimum, Cecropia, Ficus (Moracae), and Virola. Patterns in fruit consumption and preference at the familial level were similar in that only 2 families—Myristicaceae and Moraceae—were in the 10 most-consumed or most-preferred in all 4 forests. Interforest variation in plant specific composition and abundances and supra-annual fruiting phenologies, combined with dietary flexibility of Ateles spp., may partly explain these patterns. Our results suggest that variation in plant community structure strongly influences dietary preferences, and hence, seed dispersal by spider monkeys. Thus, diffuse coevolution in spider monkey-plant relationships may be limited to few taxa at the generic and familial levels.
International Journal of Primatology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 1, 2005
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera