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The socio-spatial organization of Baboon (Papio Cynocephalus) progressions at Mikumi National Park, Tanzania

Museu de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona
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  • Ecology


THE SOCIO-SPATIAL ORGANIZATION OF BABOON (PAPZO CYNOCEPHALUS) PROGRESSIONS AT MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK, TANZANIA Rhine, R.J., 1986. The socio-spatial organization of Baboon (Papio cynocephalw) progressions at Mikumi National Park, Tanzania. Misc. Zool., 10: 359-370. The socio-spatial organization of Baboon (Papio cynocephalus) progressions at Mikumi National Park, Tanzania.- In the pioneer research of Washburn and Devore, the socio-spatial organization of moving baboon progressions was thought to serve a protective function. The large, powerful adult males provided an outer nng and an inner core of protection to centrally located, vulnerable young. A senes of studies conducted at Mikumi National Park has been aimed at evaluating a mo- dified form of the protection theory. In the present paper, the Mikumi findings are reviewed, sup- plemented, and placed in the context of related research from other baboon field sites. The Miku- mi data diverged somewhat from those of early reports, but they were consistent with the modified theory and with main themes of the original protection theory. Key words: Progression order, Papio, Protection, Males, Immatures. (Rebut: 29-1 -85) R.J. Rhine, Psychology Dept., Univ. of California, Riverside, C A 92521, U.S.A. INTRODUCTION Over twenty years ago, Washburn and De- vore published a series of papers which were destined to fue1 the then fledgling science of fields primatology as few have done before or since (e.g., DEVORE, 1964; DEVORE & WASH- BURN, 1963; WASHBURN & DEVORE, 1961a, 1961b). These papers served to guide a small army of budding primatologists into field studies of primate ecology andbehavior, both to develop more fully and to examine criti- cally the ideas which emerged from the pio- neer research. Among these ideas, noni re- ceived more attention than,hypotheses about the possible protective function of the socio- spatial organization of a baboon troop as it moves from one location to another (fig. 1). As

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