PAVE Romina Elizabeth
congresos y reuniones científicas
Nectar feeding on Grevillea robusta (Proteaceae) by Alouatta caraya and its possible role in flower pollination
SILVANA PEKER; PAVÉ, ROMINA; MARIANA RAÑO; CAROLINA RAMIREZ ORJUELA; GABRIEL ZUNINO; KOWALEWSKI MARTÍN
Congreso; XIII Congresso Brasileiro de Primatologia; 2009
Sociedad Brasilera de Primatologia
Primates have been suggested to act as pollinators however their role in transporting pollen is not adequately understood and poorly documented. The effectiveness of primates as pollinators may be determined by studying the frequency of flower visits, the non-destructive consumption of nectar, the observation of individuals transporting pollen and finally experiments to assess the efficacy of pollination. We documented four cases of nectar-feeding in Alouatta caraya and its possible role of pollination of Grevillea robusta flowers. Observations were collected on two groups of howlers between 2005-2008 during a study on the behavior and ecology of A. caraya in San Cayetano (27º 30? S, 58º 41? W), Corrientes, Argentina. We used scan and focal sampling techniques to register behaviors from sunrise to sunset. During focal we collected data on the behavior, diet (species and item), height and tree species used as a substrate. When feeding on G robusta flowers, howlers brought their mouth near to the flowers attached to the inflorescence and licked nectar. They obtained nectar from different inflorescences of the same tree. After these feeding bouts, howlers carried abundant yellow pollen on their snouts. The nectar of G. robusta is an opportunistic food resource to the black and gold howler monkey. In G. robustaeffective seed production requires activity of pollinators for self-pollen removal and cross-pollen deposition. However, further experimental studies are needed to evaluate the importance of A. caraya in the pollination of G. robusta. In Argentina G. robusta (Proteaceae) is an exotic tree is native to coastal eastern Australia. The invasion ofexotic species into natural habitats is considered to be a major threat to biodiversity and the role of primates in the maintenance of these species remains unclear. Further research is critical as exotic species invasions and pollinator ecology are high priority issues in conservation biology.