Observations of daytime activity in the nocturnal northern giant mouse lemur (Mirza zaza)

Daniel Hending*, Heriniaina Randrianarison, Sam Cotton, Marc Holderied, Grainne McCabe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

Abstract

We provide an anecdote of daytime activity within the northern giant mouse lemur (Mirza zaza), a small threatened primate that has always been considered strictly nocturnal, in the Anabohazo forest of northwestern Madagascar. During the dry season, we witnessed two individual M. zaza travelling separately in the afternoon period of three different days. Our observations indicate that M. zaza may undertake activity that is essential for their survival within both the light and dark periods of a day-cycle, and our findings suggest that the activity cycle of this species may be highly flexible. These observations have important implications to understand the evolution of activity patterns in M. zaza, and these findings warrant future, long term studies to establish the annual activity patterns of M. zaza and to determine whether this species is potentially cathemeral and why.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-76
Number of pages8
JournalBehaviour
Volume158
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank National Geographic Society, La Vallée des Singes, Primate Conservation Incorporated, IdeaWild, Global Wildlife Conservation, Primate Society of Great Britain, University of Bristol and AEECL for kindly funding this research. We are grateful to MICET for their logistical support and Madagascar National Parks for granting us a research permit (245/19-MEEF/SG/DGF/DSAP/SCB.Re). Finally, we thank all of the field guides, cooks and porters that assisted us over the course of this research. DH, SC, MH and GM were responsible for study design and all fieldwork was conducted by DH and HR. All authors contributed to the preparation of the manuscript. This study was funded by National Geographic Society, La Vallée des Singes, Primate Conservation Incorporated, IdeaWild, Global Wildlife Conservation, Primate Society of Great Britain, University of Bristol and AEECL.

Publisher Copyright:
© The authors, 2021

Keywords

  • Activity patterns
  • Adaptive
  • Daytime
  • Flexible behaviour
  • Madagascar
  • Mirza zaza

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