Vocal activity of lesser galagos (Galago spp.) at zoos

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Year of Publication:
Irena Schneiderová, Jan Zouhar, Lucie Štefanská, Barbora Černá Bolfíková, Stanislav Lhota, Pavel Brandl
Zoo Biology
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Almost nothing is known about the natural vocal behavior of lesser galagos living in zoos. This is perhaps because they are usually kept in nocturnal exhibits separated from the visitors by a transparent and acoustically insulating glass barrier. The aim of the present study was therefore to fill this gap in knowledge of the vocal behavior of lesser galagos from zoos. This knowledge might be beneficial because the vocalizations of these small primates can be used for species determination. We performed a 10-day-long acoustic monitoring of vocal activity in each of seven various groups of Galago senegalensis and G. moholi living at four zoos. We quantitatively evaluated the occurrence of four loud vocalization types present in both species, including the most species-specific advertisement call. We found that qualitative as well as quantitative differences exist in the vocal behavior of the studied groups. We confirmed that the observed vocalization types can be collected from lesser galagos living at zoos, and the success can be increased by selecting larger and more diverse groups. We found two distinct patterns of diel vocal activity in the most vocally active groups. G. senegalensis groups were most vocally active at the beginning and at the end of their activity period, whereas one G. moholi group showed an opposite pattern. The latter is surprising, as it is generally accepted that lesser galagos emit advertisement calls especially at dawn and dusk, i.e., at the beginning and at the end of their diel activity. Zoo Biol. 35:147–156, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


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