0 5 10 15 20 25


Figure 7. Average forest area used (ha) by Varecia rubra females and males according to (A) seasons and (B) reproductive stages.

females had much smaller home ranges during gestation compared to lactation (t = 4.86**, df = 5) and the period of the year when they are nonreproductive (t = 3.62*, df = 4). In contrast, home range areas of males did not differ significantly between seasons or reproductive stages, and in particular, for Yellow, the male for which there is comprehensive seasonal data (Table 3). As a result, sex differences in home range area were due to fluctuations in forest area used by females, not males; mean forest area used per female was more than twice that of the male in the hot rainy season (23.3 versus 9.8 ha), less than half the size of the male in the cold rainy season (5.1 versus 12.9 ha), and similar in size to males in the hot dry (t = 0.28 ns, df = 5) and transitional cold seasons (t = 1.35 ns, df = 3, Table 3, Figure 7a). In like fashion, females had larger home ranges than males during lactation (t = 3.51*, df = 5), but not during gestation (t = 0.91 ns, df = 3) or when nonreproductive (t = 2.67 ns, df = 3, Figure 7b).

Mean Daily Distances Traveled

Males showed relatively few seasonal differences, traveling shorter daily distances in the transitional cold season than in both hot seasons (hot rainy, t = 3.01*, df = 6; hot dry, t = 2.81*, df = 9). On the other hand, females showed marked seasonal variation, traveling longer daily distances in the hot rainy season than in every other season (transitional cold, t = 2.85**, df = 16; cold rainy, t = 8.04***, df = 23; hot dry, t = 2.22*, df = 23). Compared with the cold rainy season, females also traveled farther in the transitional cold (t = 2.93**, df = 17) and hot dry seasons (t = 3.58***, df = 24). Despite marked seasonal variation in female travel distances, monthly, seasonal, and annual means did not differ between the sexes, except in the month of June. Nor did the sexes differ within any reproductive stage (Table 4, Figure 8). Yet when data are divided by reproductive stage, the sexes actually show similar longitudinal patterns (Figure 8). For both sexes, daily distances traveled when females lactated were significantly longer than they were during gestation (females, t = 8.74***, df = 30; males, t = 4.08***, df = 13) and when non reproductive (females, t = 3.82***, df = 26; males, t = 4.38***, df = 13). Females also traveled shorter daily distances during gestation than when non-reproductive (t = 3.36**, df = 28). Hence, both sexes did not begin traveling longer distances immediately after the cold rainy season, despite improved climate and food availability. Rather, this shift occurred after females gave birth and were finished nesting their young (a month earlier for males). Females dramatically increased distances covered after parturition (Nov) and throughout lactation (Table 4, Figure 8). The one sex difference similarly appears related to reproduction; males traveled significantly farther than females in June, 1 month prior to the mating season when males are known to roam.

Table 4. Mean daily distance traveled (m) by Varecia rubra females and males

Season" Hot rainy Trans, cold Cold rainy Trans. Hot dry Annual'

Reproduction' Lactation Nonreproductive Gestation Lactation














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