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Mate competition and reproductive correlates of female dispersal in a polygynous primate species (Rhinopithecus roxellana).

Research paper by Dapeng D Zhao, Weihong W Ji, Baoguo B Li, Kunio K Watanabe

Indexed on: 19 Aug '08Published on: 19 Aug '08Published in: Behavioural Processes



Abstract

Different mating systems in group-living animals have characteristic behavioral correlates that are primarily related to mate competition. Mate competition may push individuals to selectively make dispersal decisions for the purpose of maximizing of opportunities for reproduction. The Sichuan snub-nosed monkey (Rhinopithecus roxellana) is a polygynous primate species endemic to China. We provide the first data on female dispersal in a free-ranging group of R. roxellana in the Zhouzhi National Nature Reserve, Qinling Mountains, China. Both adult and subadult female dispersal occurred. Immigration/emigration rates of adult females are higher than those of subadult females. Mate competition is one apparent driving force behind adult female dispersal, and inbreeding avoidance is the possible proximate factor influencing subadult female dispersal. Adult female R. roxellana employ various reproductive strategies related to dispersal, which may increase their reproductive success.