A comparison of body size, coat condition and endoparasite diversity of wild barbary macaques exposed to different levels of tourism

Borg, Chiara and Majolo, Bonaventura and Qarro, Mohamed and Semple, Stuart (2014) A comparison of body size, coat condition and endoparasite diversity of wild barbary macaques exposed to different levels of tourism. Anthrozoos, 27 (1). pp. 49-63. ISSN 0892-7936

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Item Type:Article
Item Status:Live Archive

Abstract

Primate tourism is a rapidly growing industry with the potential to provide considerable conservation benefits. However, assessing the impact of tourists on the animals involved is vital to ensure that the conservation value of primate tourism is maximized. In this study, we compared body size, coat condition, and endoparasite diversity of wild, adult Barbary macaques exposed to different levels of tourism. Study animals belonged to three groups located in the Middle Atlas Mountains, Morocco: "green group" (GG) and "scarlet group" (SG) were exposed to negligible/no tourism, while the "tourist group" (TG) was exposed to very high levels of tourism. We used photogrammetry to quantify body size, scored coat condition from photographs, and quantified endoparasite species number from fecal samples. For both males and females, TG animals had deeper stomachs and wider hips than SG and GG animals. The coat condition of TG males was worse than that of SG and GG males, but no difference between groups was seen for females. Fecal samples from TG males contained a greater mean number of protozoan species than did samples from SG and GG males; for females a similar difference was found between TG and GG, but not between TG and SG. This study provides evidence that tourism has impacts on the body size, coat condition, and endoparasite diversity of Barbary macaques at this site. Further study is required to assess whether such effects are detrimental to the health of these animals. © ISAZ 2014.

Keywords:Body size, Coat condition, Endoparasite, Macaca sylvanus, Tourism, NotOAChecked
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C180 Ecology
D Veterinary Sciences, Agriculture and related subjects > D300 Animal Science
D Veterinary Sciences, Agriculture and related subjects > D328 Animal Welfare
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:13356
Deposited On:17 Feb 2014 15:36

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