Changes in Forest Composition and Potential Feeding Tree Availability on a Small Land-Bridge Island in Lago Guri, Venezuela

  • Marilyn A. Norconk
  • Brian W. Grafton


Fragmentation of tropical forests affects the viability of primate populations worldwide. A recent assessment of habitat loss in Latin America has estimated that 9.7% of extant forest was lost between 1980 and 1995 (Chapman and Peres, 2001). Forest fragmentation has many causes (e.g., human encroachment for settlements, agricultural practices, logging, and flooding, Alvarez et al., 1986; Cosson et al., 1999; Chapman and Peres, 2001), but these causes share a common phenomenon. Disruption of contiguous forest creates disjunct patches of forest separated by different types of land use, vegetation, or water, in the case of flooding (Alvarez et al., 1986; Saunders et al., 1991; Terborgh et al., 1997; Cosson et al., 1999). Forest remnants are both smaller, when compared to contiguous forest, and isolated from other forest patches (Saunders et al., 1991). The nature of the surrounding modified habitats—or matrix—imposes a variety of novel (and often detrimental) effects on the plant and animal species still residing within a given fragment (Cosson et al., 1999). In the case of land-bridge islands, water as a barrier has a powerful effect, both in terms of limiting dispersal of resident species and providing an unusable habitat for those species (Turner, 1996; Terborgh et al., 1997; Cosson et al., 1999).


Forest Fragment Maximum Wind Speed Forest Fragmentation Hydroelectric Plant Forest Composition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Alvarez, E., Balbâs, L., Massa, I., and Pacheco, J., 1986, Aspectos ecológicos del Embalse Guri, Interciencia 11: 325–333.Google Scholar
  2. Aymard, G., Norconk, M., and Kinzey, W., 1997, Composición florística de comunidades vegetates en islas en el embalse de Guri, Rio Caroní, Estado Bolívar, Venezuela, BioLlania Edición Esp. 6: 195–233.Google Scholar
  3. Ayres, M. M., 1989, Comparative feeding ecology of the uakari and bearded saki, Cacajao and Chiropotes, J. Hum. Evol. 18: 697–716.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Benitez-Malvido, J., 1998, Impact of forest fragmentation on seedling abundance in a tropical rain forest, Cons. Bio. 12: 380–389.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Boubli, J. P., 1999, Feeding ecology of black-headed uacaris (Cacajao melanocephalus melanocephalus) in Pico da Neblina National Park, Brazil, lot. J. Primatol. 20: 719–749.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brush, J. A., 2000, Sleeping ecology of white-faced saki monkeys in Lago Guri, Venezuela, Master’s thesis, Kent State Univerisity, Kent, OH.Google Scholar
  7. Chapman, C. A., and Peres, C. A., 2001, Primate conservation in the new millennium: The role of scientists, Evol. Anthrop. 10: 16–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Cosson, J. F., Ringuet, S., Claessens, O., de Massary, J. C., Dalecky, A., Villiers, J. F., Granjon, L., and Pons, J. M., 1999, Ecological changes in recent land-bridge islands in French Guiana, with emphasis on vertebrate communities, Biol. Conser. 91: 213–222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. CVG -EDELCA (Corporación Venezolana de Guayana, Electrificación del Caroní), 1997, Guri, “Raul Leoni” Hydroelectric Central, CVG-EDELCA, Caracas.Google Scholar
  10. Estrada, A., and Coates-Estrada, R., 1988, Tropical rain forest conversion and perspectives in the conservation of wild primates (Alouatta and Ateles) in Mexico, Am. J. Primatol. 14: 315–327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Estrada, A., and Coates-Estrada, R., 1996, Tropical rain forest fragmentation and wild populations of primates at Los Tuxtlas, Mexico, Int. J. Primatol. 17: 759–783.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Ferriera, L. V., and Laurance, W. F., 1997, Effects of forest fragmentation on mortality and damage of selected trees in Central America, Cons. Bio. 11: 797–801.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gravitol, A. D., Ballou, J. D., and Fleischer, R. C., 2001, Microsatellite variation within and among recently fragmented populations of the golden lion tamarin (Leontopithecus rosalia), Conser. Gen. 2: 1–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Hershkovitz, P., 1985, A preliminary taxonomic review of the South American bearded saki monkeys genus Chiropotes (Cebidae, Platyrrhini), with the description of a new subspecies, Fieldiana, Zoology n.s. 27: 1–46.Google Scholar
  15. Hershkovitz, P., 1987a, The taxonomy of South American sakis, genus Pithecia (Cebidae, Platyrrhini): A preliminary report and critical review with the description of a new species and a new subspecies, Am. J. Primatol. 12: 387–468.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hershkovitz, P., 1987b, Uacaris, New World monkeys of the genus Cacajao (Cebidae, Platyrrhini): A preliminary taxonomic review with the description of a new subspecies, Ant. J. Primatol. 12: 1–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Howe, H. F., 1984, Implications of seed dispersal by animals for tropical reserve management, Biol. Cons. 30: 261–281.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Huber, O., 1986, La vegetatión de la cuenca del Rio Caroni, btterciencia 11: 301–310.Google Scholar
  19. Johns, A. D., and Skorupa, J. P., 1987, Responses of rain-forest primates to habitat disturbance: A review, bit. J. Primatol. 8: 157–191.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Kapos, V., 1989, Effects of isolation on the water status of forest patches in the Brazilian Amazon, J. Trop. Ecol. 5: 173–185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kapos, V., Wandelli, E., Camargo, J. L., and Ganade, G., 1997, Edge-related changes in environment and plant responses due to forest fragmentation in Central Amazonia, in: Tropical Forest Remnants: Ecology, Management, and Conservation of Fragmented Communities, W. F. Laurance and R. O. Bierregarrd, eds., University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp. 33–44.Google Scholar
  22. Kinzey, W., 1992, Dietary and dental adaptations in the Pitheciinae, Am. J. Phys. Anth. 88: 499–514.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Kinzey, W. G., Norconk, M. A., and Alvarez-Cordero, E., 1989, Primate survey of eastern Bolívar, Venezuela, Primate Cons. 9: 66–70.Google Scholar
  24. Kinzey, W., and Norconk, M., 1990, Hardness as a basis of fruit choice in two sympatric primates, Am. J. Phys. Anth. 81: 5–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kinzey, W. G., and Norconk, M. A., 1992, Physical and chemical properties of fruit and seeds eaten by Pithecia and Chiropotes in Surinam and Venezuela, Int. J. Phys. Anth. 14: 207–227.Google Scholar
  26. Laurance, W. F., Ferreira, L. V., Rankin-DeMerona, J. M., and Laurance, S. G., 1998a, Rain forest fragmentation and the dynamics of Amazonian tree communities, Ecol. 79:2, 032–2, 040.Google Scholar
  27. Laurance, W. F., Ferreira, L. V., Rankin-DeMerona, J. M., Laurance, S. G., Hutchings, R. W., and Lovejoy, T. E., 1998b, Effects of forest fragmentation on recruitment patterns in Amazonian tree communities, Cons. Bio. 12: 460–464.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Leigh, E. G., Jr., Wright, S. J., Herre, E. A., and Putz, F. E., 1993, The decline of tree diversity on newly isolated tropical islands: A test of a null hypothesis and some implications, Evol. Ecol. 7: 76–102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Lovejoy, T. E., Bierregaard, R. O., Jr., Rylands, A. B., Malcolm, J. T., Quintela, C. E., Harper, L. H., Brown, K. S., Jr., Powell, A. H., Powell, G. V. N., Schubart, H. O. R., and Hays, M. B., 1986, Edge and other effects of isolation on Amazon forest fragments, in: Conservation Biology: The Science of Scarcity and Diversity, M. E. Soulé, ed., Sinauer, Assoc. Inc, Sunderland, MA, pp. 257–285.Google Scholar
  30. Mesquita, R. C. G., Delamonica, P., and Laurance, W. F., 1999, Effect of surrounding vegetation on edge-related tree mortality in Amazonian forest fragments, Biol. Cons. 91: 129–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Milton, K., 1982, Dietary quality and demographic regulation in a howler monkey population, in: Ecology of a Tropical Forest: Seasonal Rhythms and Long-term Changes, E. G. Leigh, Jr., A. S. Rand, and D. M. Windsor, eds., Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C., pp. 273–289.Google Scholar
  32. Murcia, C., 1995, Edge effects in fragmented forests: Implications for conservation, TREE 10: 58–62.Google Scholar
  33. Norconk, M. A., 1996, Seasonal variation in the diets of white-faced and bearded sakis (Pithecia pithecia and Chiropotes satanas) in Guri Lake, Venezuela, in: Adaptive Radiations of Neotropical Primates, M. A. Norconk, A. L. Rosenberger, and P. A. Garber, eds., Plenum Press, New York.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Onderdonk, D. A., and Chapman, C. A., 2000, Coping with forest fragmentation: The primates of Kibale National Park, Uganda, Int. J. of Primatol. 21: 587–611.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Pannell, C. M., 1989, The role of animals in natural regeneration and the management of equatorial rain forests for conservation and timber production, Corn. For. Rev. 68: 309–313.Google Scholar
  36. Parolin, P., 1992, Characterization and classification of the vegetation in an island of Lake Guri, Venezuela, Masters Thesis, University of Bielefeld, Germany.Google Scholar
  37. Parolin, P., 1993, Forest inventory in an island of Lake Guri, Venezuela, in: Animal-Plant Interactions in Tropical Environments, W. Barthlott, C. M. Naumann, K. Schmidt-Loske, and K. L. Schuchmann, eds., Zoologisches Forschungsinstitut und Museum Alexander Koenig, Bonn, pp. 139–147.Google Scholar
  38. Peres, C. A., 1993, Notes on the ecology of buffy saki monkeys (Pithecia albicans, Gray 1860): A canopy seed-predator, Am. J. Primatol. 31: 129–140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Pope, T. R., 1996, Socioecology, population fragmentation, and patterns of genetic loss in endangered primates, in: Conservation Genetics: Case Histories from Nature, J. Avise and J. Hamrick, eds., Kluwer Academic Publishers, Norwell, MA, pp. 119–159.Google Scholar
  40. Powell, A. H., and Powell, G. V. N., 1987, Population dynamics of male euglossine bees in Amazonian forest fragments, Biotropica 19: 176–179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Roo, H., 1987, El desatrollo hidroeléctrico en Venezuela, EDELCA, CVG, Ano XII, Segunda Epoca, Edición Especial, pp. 5–10.Google Scholar
  42. Saunders, D. A., Hobbs, R. J., and Margules, C. R., 1991, Biological consequences of ecosystem fragmentation: A review, Cons. Bio. 5: 18–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Sizer, N., and Tanner, E. V. J., 1999, Responses of woody plant seedlings to edge formation in a lowland tropical rainforest, Amazonia, Biol. Cons. 91: 135–142.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Soini, P., 1986, A synecological study of a primate community in the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve, Peru, Primate Cons. 7: 63–71.Google Scholar
  45. Stevenson, P. R., 2001, The relationship between fruit production and primate abundance in Neotropical communities, Biol. J. Linn. Soc. 72: 161–178.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Terborgh, J., Lopez, L., Tello, J., Yu, D., and Bruni, A. R., 1997, Transitory states in relaxing ecosystems of land bridge islands, in: Tropical Forest Remnants: Ecology, Management, and Conservation of Fragmented Communities, W. F. Laurance and R. O. Bierregarrd, eds., University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp. 256–274.Google Scholar
  47. Terborgh, J., Lopez, L., Nunez V. P., Rao, M., Shahabuddin, G., Orihuela, G., Riveros, M., Ascanio, R., Adler, G. H., Lambert, T. D., and Balbas, L., 2001, Ecological meltdown in predator-free forest fragments, Science 294:1, 923–1, 926.Google Scholar
  48. Turner, L. M., 1996, Species loss in fragments of tropical rain forest: A review of the evidence, J. App. Ecol. 33: 200–209.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Turton, S. M., and Freiburger, H. 1., 1997, Edge and aspect effects on the microclimate of a small tropical forest remnant on the Atherton Tableland, Northern Australia, in: Tropical Forest Remnants: Ecology, Management, and Conservation of Fragmented Communities, W. F. Laurance and R. O. Bierregarrd, eds., University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp. 45–54.Google Scholar
  50. Tutin, C. E. G., 1999, Fragmented living: Behavioural ecology of primates in a forest fragment in the Lopé Reserve, Gabon, Primates 40: 249–265.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Tutin, C. E. G., and White, L., 1999, The recent evolutionary past of primate communities: Likely environmental impacts during the past three millenia, in: Primate Communities, J. G. Fleagle, C. Janson, and K. E. Reed, eds., Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, MA, pp. 220–236.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. van Roosmalen, M. G. M., Mittermeier, R. A., and Fleagle, J. G., 1988, Diet of the northern bearded saki (Chiropotes satanas chiropotes): A neotropical seed predator, Am. J. Primat. 14: 11–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Vié, J. C., Richard-Hansen, C., and Fournier-Chambrillon, C., 2001, Abundance, use of space, and activity patterns of white-faced sakis (Pidaecia pithecia) in French Guiana, Am. J. Primat. 55: 203–222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marilyn A. Norconk
    • 1
  • Brian W. Grafton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Anthropology and Biological Anthropology Program, School of Biomedical SciencesKent State UniversityKentUSA

Personalised recommendations