KOWALEWSKI Miguel Martin
capítulos de libros
Ecological determinants of pathogen infection in howler monkeys
MARTINEZ-MOTA, RODOLFO; KOWALEWSKI, M MARTIN; GILLESPIE, THOMAS R
Howler Monkeys: Adaptive Radiation, Systematics, and Morphology
Lugar: New York; Año: 2015; p. 259 - 285
Infectious diseases caused by pathogens are now recognized as one of the most important threats to primate conservation. The fact that howler monkeys (Alouatta spp.) are widely distributed from Southern Mexico to Northern Argentina, inhabit a diverse array of habitats, and are considered pioneers, particularly adapted to exploit marginal habitats, provides an opportunity to explore general trends of parasitism and evaluate the dynamics of infectious diseases in this genus. We take a meta-analysis approach to examine the effect of ecological and environmental variables on parasitic infection using data from 7 howler monkey species at more than 35 sites throughout their distribution. We found that different factors including precipitation, latitude, altitude, and human proximity may infl uence parasite infection depending on the parasite type. We also found that parasites infecting howler monkeys followed a right-skewed distribution, suggesting that only a few individuals harbor infections. This result highlights the importance of collecting large sample sizes when developing these kinds of studies. We suggest that future studies should focus on obtaining fi ne-grained measurements of ecological and microclimate changes to provide better insights into the proximate factors that promote parasitism.