The effect of food provisioning on ranging patterns of long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) in non-anthropogenic areas is largely unknown, as most published studies have focused on urban macaques. In this study, we quantified habitat selection, daily path length and home range size in long-tailed macaques in Baluran National Park, East Java, Indonesia, comparing a non-provisioned to a provisioned group. To track the groups, we deployed six GPS-collars on females in both groups, of which only two collected data. Home range size (90% Auto-correlated Kernel Density Estimate) was 23 times smaller for the provisioned group (10.62 ha) than the non-provisioned group (249.90 ha). Home range size and area changed from dry to wet season for the non-provisioned group. Provisioned group home range size correlated negatively with number of visitors in the national park. Daily path length was significantly higher for the non-provisioned group. The provisioned group preferred settlements, where most of the provisioning occurred, and avoided areas with invasive acacia (Acacia nilotica). The non-provisioned group also avoided invasive acacia, preferred secondary forest in the dry season and restored savannah in the wet season. Food provisioning can affect macaque spatial ecology, by shaping daily travel length and home range size, and changing patterns of habitat selection. Even tourism in a managed national park, where provisioning is strictly prohibited although not always enforced, has significant consequences for animal behaviour and their natural ecosystems.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Animal Science and Zoology
- behavioural flexibility
- ranging patterns
- wildlife management