Dominance rank influences female space use in wild chimpanzees, Pan troglodytes: towards an ideal despotic distribution


Journal Article

Studies from many different taxa have demonstrated that dominance rank greatly influences individual space use. While the importance of dominance among female chimpanzees, Pan troglodytes, was debated in the past, mounting evidence now shows that rank is very important. In particular, rank has been shown to influence body mass, foraging strategies, association patterns, and ultimately, reproductive success. In this study, we investigated how rank influenced female space use among chimpanzees, P.t. schweinfurthii, at Gombe National Park, Tanzania. Analysing 10 years of data, we found that new immigrants used areas away from dominant females, and that subordinates had lower site fidelity. We also found that high-ranking females had smaller core areas and that this size difference was pronounced during periods of food scarcity when food competition is highest. These patterns suggest that dominant females outcompete subordinates, forcing them to settle elsewhere, range more widely, and shift their space use across time. © 2007.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Murray, CM; Mane, SV; Pusey, AE

Published Date

  • December 1, 2007

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 74 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 1795 - 1804

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0003-3472

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.anbehav.2007.03.024

Citation Source

  • Scopus