Urine, feces, and copulation frequency were collected from two captive muriqui females, Brachyteles arachnoides, at the Centro de Primatologia do Rio de Janeiro following the resumption of postpartum ovarian cycles. Fecal steroid profiles from seven wild muriqui females at the Estação Biologica de Caratinga, Minas Gerais, Brazil, were compared to the captive females to determine the approximate patterns of steroid excretion relative to the urinary LH peak. Hormonal profiles from one of the captive female muriquis revealed a discrete urinary LH peak. For this female, fecal progesterone increased on the same day as the urinary LH peak, while fecal estradiol increased 6 days later and urinary steroids increased 5 days later. For both captive females, the onset of fecal progesterone increase was preceded by the onset of copulations, which occurred during at least a 5‐day period. The complete fecal hormonal profiles of the one captive female for which continuous data were available were similar to those found in wild muriqui monkeys, with the onset of an increase in sustained progesterone levels occurring several days prior to the onset of sustained estradiol increase. These patterns suggest that fecal progesterone may be excreted rapidly in this species. The onset of sustained increase in fecal progesterone levels, together with the consistent delay in the onset of the sustained increase in estradiol, may provide the best indicators of the periovulatory period for muriqui females. Am. J. Primatol. 42:311–321, 1997. © 1997 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.
American Journal of Primatology – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 1997
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