Food choice from endemic North Carolina tree species by captive prosimians (Lemur fulvus)

Thumbnail Image



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Repository Usage Stats


Citation Stats


Seven captive‐born lemurs (Lemur fulvus) at the Duke University Primate Center were presented with leaves of different maturity from five species of North Carolina trees. The animals demonstrated three distinct behaviors toward the novel plant material. They sniffed, tasted, and/or ingested it. New leaves were sniffed, but little tasting and ingestion was observed. Intermediate pine needles were sniffed and ingested but little tasted. Mature leaves were sniffed equally, but the mature leaves of tulip trees and honeysuckle were tasted significantly more than pine, sweetgum, and red maple. Pine, sweetgum, and red maple were ingested significantly more than tulip trees and honeysuckle. Male lemurs ate significantly more mature pine needles and new sweetgum leaves than did the females. Chemical analysis of these plant materials indicated that the new and mature leaves of tulip tree and honeysuckle contained alkaloids. Captive‐born lemurs apparently use their sense of smell and taste in choosing what to eat and seem just as capable as free‐ranging animals in finding food when faced with the chemical defenses that protect trees from insect predation. Copyright © 1983 Wiley‐Liss, Inc., A Wiley Company






Published Version (Please cite this version)


Publication Info

Glander, Kenneth E, and Dori P Rabin (1983). Food choice from endemic North Carolina tree species by captive prosimians (Lemur fulvus). American Journal of Primatology, 5(3). pp. 221–229. 10.1002/ajp.1350050306 Retrieved from

This is constructed from limited available data and may be imprecise. To cite this article, please review & use the official citation provided by the journal.



Kenneth Earl Glander

Professor Emeritus of Evolutionary Anthropology

Primate ecology and social organization: the interaction between feeding patterns and social structure; evolutionary development of optimal group size and composition; factors affecting short and long-term demographic changes in stable groups; primate use of regenerating forests.

Unless otherwise indicated, scholarly articles published by Duke faculty members are made available here with a CC-BY-NC (Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial) license, as enabled by the Duke Open Access Policy. If you wish to use the materials in ways not already permitted under CC-BY-NC, please consult the copyright owner. Other materials are made available here through the author’s grant of a non-exclusive license to make their work openly accessible.