Friday, 17 November 2017

Tracking collars uncover the secrets of baboons' raiding tactics


Date:  November 8, 2017
Source:  Swansea University

Summary:
New research shows how canny baboons in Cape Town use a sit-and-wait tactic before raiding people's homes in search of food.

Scientists from Swansea University are part of an international team who have revealed how canny baboons in Cape Town, South Africa, use a sit-and-wait tactic before raiding people's homes in search of food.

"Raiding baboons are a real challenge in the Cape Peninsula, South Africa. The baboons enter properties to raid in gardens and bins, but also enter homes and sometimes take food directly from people," said Professor Justin O'Riain, Director of the Institute for Communities and Wildlife in Africa at the University of Cape Town, and co-author on the study published by Scientific Reports.

In a previous study, the team showed that whilst Cape Town's baboon management strategy was keeping baboons away from the urban space, some males were still finding ways in. The team therefore built bespoke baboon tracking collars allowing them track the movements and activity levels of 10 males via GPS and accelerometer sensors.

Dr Gaëlle Fehlmann, lead author of the study, said: "People assume the baboons don't have enough food in their natural habitats and therefore have no choice but to forage in town. In fact, our research shows there is plenty of food in the natural environment where there is very little risk of the baboons being disturbed by anyone. In contrast, the chances of human-baboon conflicts in urban areas are high, but so are the food rewards, which are 10 times richer in terms of calories."


No comments:

Post a comment

You only need to enter your comment once! Comments will appear once they have been moderated. This is so as to stop the would-be comedian who has been spamming the comments here with inane and often offensive remarks. You know who you are!

Related Posts with Thumbnails

ShareThis