Competing for space

female chimpanzees are more aggressive inside than outside their core areas

Jordan A. Miller, Anne E. Pusey, Ian Gilby, Kara Schroepfer-Walker, A. Catherine Markham, Carson M. Murray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Female space use can have important fitness consequences, which are likely due to differential access to food resources. Many studies have explored spatial competition in solitary species, but little is known about how individuals in social species compete over shared space. In this study, we investigate spatial patterns of aggression among female East African chimpanzees, Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii. This species provides an excellent opportunity to study spatial competition since (1) female chimpanzees occupy overlapping core areas (small areas of the community range in which individuals concentrate their space use) and (2) female core area quality is correlated with reproductive success, suggesting that females compete over long-term access to core areas. Here, we examine how female aggression towards other females varies inside and outside individual female core areas during a 14-year period at Gombe National Park, Tanzania. Overall, females showed higher rates of aggression inside than outside their own core areas. This pattern was driven by spatial variation in aggression in nonfeeding contexts. While food-related aggression did not vary spatially, females were more aggressive in nonfeeding contexts inside their core areas than they were outside their core areas. These results suggest that female chimpanzees follow a mixed strategy in which they compete for long-term access to resources in their core areas as well as for immediate access to food throughout the community range.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAnimal Behaviour
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2013
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Pan troglodytes
aggression
space use
food
resource
Tanzania
reproductive success
spatial variation
national parks
national park
fitness
concentrates

Keywords

  • aggression
  • chimpanzee
  • foraging
  • Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii
  • resource competition
  • space use
  • territoriality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

Miller, J. A., Pusey, A. E., Gilby, I., Schroepfer-Walker, K., Catherine Markham, A., & Murray, C. M. (Accepted/In press). Competing for space: female chimpanzees are more aggressive inside than outside their core areas. Animal Behaviour. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2013.10.023

Competing for space : female chimpanzees are more aggressive inside than outside their core areas. / Miller, Jordan A.; Pusey, Anne E.; Gilby, Ian; Schroepfer-Walker, Kara; Catherine Markham, A.; Murray, Carson M.

In: Animal Behaviour, 2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Miller, Jordan A. ; Pusey, Anne E. ; Gilby, Ian ; Schroepfer-Walker, Kara ; Catherine Markham, A. ; Murray, Carson M. / Competing for space : female chimpanzees are more aggressive inside than outside their core areas. In: Animal Behaviour. 2013.
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