Diet of West African Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes verus) in a Savanna Landscape at Fongoli, Senegal
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Chimpanzees are considered frugivores with the primary consumed forage being fruit items. Chimpanzees living in savanna habitats are hypothesized to be limited by the distribution of fruit with higher levels of scarcity when compared to chimpanzees living in forested areas. Pruetz (2006) first described the feeding ecology of savanna chimpanzees at Fongoli, Senegal based on preliminary information from the initial years of the study site (2001-present). The current study updates the diet of the Fongoli chimpanzees with a dataset covering a decade (2005-2014). Findings show the Fongoli chimpanzees consumed fruit, flowers, pith, cambium and seeds from 77 identified species of climbers, grasses, trees and shrubs. The chimpanzees are also found to consumed mammals (patas monkeys, green monkeys, baboons and galagos), insects (termites, beetles and ants) and animal products including honey. Among all consumed items, fruit was the most common food type by count. Additionally, there is a seasonal shift between wet and dry seasons when comparing count percentages with the wet season dominated by fruit and animal products while the dry season was dominated by foliage and fruit.