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Community ecology. Koala Conga Line…. Community- groups of interacting populations. Primate behavior shaped by interactions with other primate species. Can be potentially influenced by interactions with other organisms.

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community ecology

Community ecology

Koala Conga Line….

Community- groups of interacting populations
  • Primate behavior shaped by interactions with other primate species
  • Can be potentially influenced by interactions with other organisms
some definitions
Niche- a way to define the role an organism plays in its environment- multidimensional

Sympatry- when two organisms share a habitat

Congeneric- within the same genus (taxonomic category)

Some definitions
when similar species share
When similar species share...
  • One may go extinct
  • There may be evidence of behavioral character displacement (when one species shifts its niche)
  • Share if
    • Resources are not limited
    • There is an area where they don’t overlap

(physical and dietary)


Ways to look at community

  • Trophic structure chart (11.1- coursepak)
    • Example: plants eaten by hippo, hippo eaten by hyenas, hyenas eaten by lions, lions eaten by vultures.
    • Note trend in population size for each category
    • Primate/plant interactions at the bottom
    • Primate impact on leaf

biomass (1%) compared

to insects (15%)


Ways to look at community

  • Biomass of everything (coursepak- Fig 11.2)
  • Biomass of mammals (coursepak Fig 11.1)
  • Body weight representation (Robinson graph handout)
  • Note- animals make up small part of community
  • mammals make up an even smaller part
  • Primates very small!

Ways to look at community

  • Guilds-animals that occupy similar niches (role played in environment)- use resources in similar ways despite being very different organisms.
      • Figure 14.4 - Avian guilds (in coursepak)
        • Note differences between forests
        • Note how partitioned
ants and howlers
Ants and Howlers
  • Both eat tremendous amount of leaves
  • But only overlap on 7 out of 40 plant species
  • Howlers, majority of diet New leaves
  • Ants almost entirely eat Mature leaves
example 2 howlers and sloths
Example 2- Howlers and Sloths
  • Can have up to 80% overlap in diet.
  • But sloths eat little (lower BMR)
malayan fruit feeders
Malayan Fruit feeders
  • Primates eat unripe fruits, hornbills eat ripe ones
  • Primates feed in upper canopy along with 3 or so squirrel species
  • Squirrels eat seeds, primates fruit flesh
  • Primates supplement with leaves, birdds with insects or other fruits.
  • Between plants and animals
  • A relationship developes between two organisms such that, as they interact with each other over time, each exerts a selection pressure on the other.
  • Evolution of each becomes interdependent on that interaction
some primate examples
“positive relationships”

Seed dispersal


“Negative relationships”

Seed predation

Some primate examples