Supplementary Material for: Frugivory and Seed Dispersal Patterns of the Red-Ruffed Lemur, Varecia rubra, at a Forest Restoration Site in Masoala National Park, Madagascar
2014-10-16T00:00:00Z (GMT) by
Frugivorous primates can play a critical role in the regeneration of degraded habitats by dispersing seeds of their food plants. We studied the diet and seed dispersal patterns of 3 groups of habituated red-ruffed lemurs (Varecia rubra) in a rain forest restoration site in Masoala National Park, Madagascar, to assess the species' seed dispersal effectiveness. Fruits accounted for 61% of the diet, with an average foraging time of 10 min per fruit patch per day. Seeds from 75% of the consumed fruit species were recovered in the collected V. rubra feces. We traced the potential parent plants of 20 dispersed-seed species to calculate a gut passage range (63-423 min; mean = 225, n = 35). The median seed dispersal distance from the potential parent plant was 48 m (mean = 83 m, range 0-568 m, n = 194). The home ranges of 2 of the 3 groups overlapped with the regenerating forest parcels. Although 92% of fecal samples with seeds were dispersed into the undisturbed forest, V. rubra fed on the fruits of the non-native pioneer shrub Clidemia hirta, while also dispersing native and non-native seed species into the regenerating forest parcels.