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Title: Energetics and life-history of olive baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis) in the Gashaka Gumti National Park
Author: Lodge, Emily
ISNI:       0000 0004 2723 6152
Awarding Body: University of Roehampton
Current Institution: University of Roehampton
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis uses a number of novel methods to investigate how various measures of individual energetic status and condition vary within and between two troops of olive baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis) in Gashaka Gumti National Park, Nigeria. One troop is entirely wild-feeding whilst the other supplements its diet with crop-raiding, behaviour previously suggested to provide energetic benefits. Observations of activity budgets and feeding behaviour were combined with nutritional analyses of food samples to estimate energetic intake and expenditure amongst adult female baboons. Glucocorticoid (stress hormone), progesterone (reproductive hormone) and urinary C-peptide (an indicator of energetic status) levels of the same animals were assessed via analyses of faecal and urine samples. These data were used to investigate the effect of food-enhancement, between troops; the effect of reproductive state and rank, within troops; and the effect of variation in weather conditions and food availability across the nine month study period. Benefits of crop-raiding behaviour included elevated resting time, energy intake rates and reproductive success, and reduced feeding time and glucocorticoid levels in the crop-raiding troop as compared to the wild-feeding troop. Food-enhancement also appears to have buffered the crop-raiding troop’s energetic status and stress levels against the effects of environmental stressors. Within troops, energy intake and expenditure rates varied between individuals in different reproductive states but not different ranks and neither factor significantly affected C-peptide or glucocorticoid levels. Rainfall had a considerable but variable influence on the baboons, being correlated with both positive and negative aspects of their behaviour and condition. Gashaka represents an extreme habitat for baboons, with high rainfall creating both a food and disease rich environment. The results of this study suggest that while low to moderate rainfall brings benefits, via increased food availability, heavy rainfall exerts a negative influence on the Gashaka baboons via increased disease risk.
Supervisor: Ross, Caroline ; MacLarnon, Ann Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: olive baboon ; life history ; papio hamadryas anubis ; energetic status ; Nigeria