Publications of Marie-Claude Huynen
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See detailThe role of Macaca spp (primates Cercopithecidae) in seed dispersal networks
Albert, Aurélie; Savini, Tommaso ULiege; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege

in Raffles Bulletin of Zoology (2013), 61

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See detailBehavioural Ecology of Bonobos (Pan paniscus) in the Forest-Savannah Mosaics of Western Democratic Republic of Congo
Vimond, Marie; Serckx, Adeline ULiege; Beudels-Jamar, Roseline et al

in Folia Primatologica: International Journal of Primatology (2013)

The long-term survival of the Endangered bonobo (IUCN, 2012) will depend on well thought out conservation programmes that need to be built both upon the species’ ecological requirements and local socio ... [more ▼]

The long-term survival of the Endangered bonobo (IUCN, 2012) will depend on well thought out conservation programmes that need to be built both upon the species’ ecological requirements and local socio-economics realities. Yet there is still a lot to find out, including information on the species geographical distribution. In 2005, the presence of a western population was confirmed in the forest-savannah mosaic in the south-western part of the Lake Tumba Landscape. With the exception of an early study carried out in Lukuru, the species is mainly known from lowland rainforest research sites in the Cuvette Centrale. The western forest-savannah mosaic is an ecotone with a marked seasonal pattern, a high variability of habitats and monthly variations in fruit production. All this leads to spatio-temporal variation of food availability. In order to increase studies and monitoring of this unique population, WWF initiated a habituation process of two groups of bonobos 6 years ago. The groups are now semi-habituated, making the collection of direct daily observations possible. Our objective is to describe the behavioural strategies developed by this population in order to cope with spatio-temporal variations of food availability. This will be approached by identifying daily activity, ranging and grouping patterns, in order to understand how they affect social structure. It should also allow us to define the use of savannahs. Our findings will help determine specific conservations measures for this endangered species. [less ▲]

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See detailRole of the western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) in seed dispersal in tropical forests and implications of its decline
Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Tagg, Nikki; Haurez, Barbara ULiege et al

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement (2013), 17(3), 517-526

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See detailOptimizing scale search in species distribution models
Serckx, Adeline ULiege; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege; Beudels-Jamar, Roseline et al

in Folia Primatologica: International Journal of Primatology (2013), 84

The influence of spatial scale on ecological processes and pattern formation, such as species distribution is a major research topic since decades. It has become even more relevant in the context of ... [more ▼]

The influence of spatial scale on ecological processes and pattern formation, such as species distribution is a major research topic since decades. It has become even more relevant in the context of global change. In many studies the influence of a predictor on a response derived over multiple and discrete spatial scales is evaluated. Due to inherent issue of multiple testing, this approach can be problematic. In this study on bonobos distribution, we suggest a 3-steps procedure that overcomes this problem. It takes into account the decay of a predictor by using a weighting function of distance to the observation of interest. We use variables to account for human pressure, food availability, patchy structure of the forest and nesting sites re-use. In a first step, we run a model with a fixed scale for every predictor based on expert opinion. For significant variables, we derive then in a second step the distance weighted influence over a range of scales. This helps to narrow down the search for the final model parameter estimates. Findings indicate that bonobo distribution is driven on the intermediate scale by forest patches structure. Food availability explains their abundance only at smaller scales. Those results demonstrate the sadly well-known influence of habitat fragmentation on animals’ density and distribution but also highlight the importance to understand influences of scale, the animal perceptions of their environment, by using appropriate statistical procedures. Our method can be particularly useful to formulate specific management hypotheses for conservation. Furthermore, its principles can be of use to other types of studies, such as behavior. [less ▲]

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See detailRanging behaviour and sleeping sites of Macaca fascicularis in Bali Barat National Park, Indonesia
Brotcorne, Fany ULiege; Maslarov, Cindy; Dosogne, Thibaut et al

Conference (2012, August 15)

Ranging behaviour and sleeping site selection are important primate behavioural traits likely to vary under environmental changes. We tested the role of ecological (predation avoidance) and anthropic ... [more ▼]

Ranging behaviour and sleeping site selection are important primate behavioural traits likely to vary under environmental changes. We tested the role of ecological (predation avoidance) and anthropic (human proximity) factors in Macaca fascicularis range use, an edge species known to prefer living along forests borders and in the vicinity of human settlements. Data result from 56 day follows of one group of Macaca fascicularis exploiting a human-modified landscape within Bali Barat National Park (Indonesia). Observations allowed identifying and describing 17 sleeping sites and the characteristics of 37 sleeping trees. Despite a large forest area available, the group’s home range centred around human settlements. The home range size, average daily range and daily travel decreased over the study period, while the human presence inside the park increased over the corresponding months. The proximity with humans also influenced the pattern of sleeping sites use; macaques slept more than expected close to human settlements and this tendency increased over the study period. In contradiction with the predation avoidance assumption, macaques did not choose sleeping trees significantly taller and larger than other trees available. We conclude that the observed sleeping site strategy (sleeping near humans) could be advantageous in terms of predator avoidance and proximity with human food, but additional influences should not be neglected. [less ▲]

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See detailA study on the ecology of northern pigtail macaque (Amcaca nemestrina) in Khao Yai National PArk
Savini, Tommaso ULiege; albert, aurélie; José Dominguez, Juan Manuel et al

Conference (2012, August)

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See detailParásitos en primates de la Amazonía Ecuatoriana: una herramienta para la salud pública y la conservación
Martin, Sarah ULiege; Carrillo-Bilbao, Gabriel Alberto; Celi, Maritza et al

Conference (2012, June 22)

Los primates son reservorios de patógenos humanos ya sea que estén en libertad o en cautiverio. Si identificamos los parásitos y las enfermedades que estos ocasionan en primates, sería una herramienta ... [more ▼]

Los primates son reservorios de patógenos humanos ya sea que estén en libertad o en cautiverio. Si identificamos los parásitos y las enfermedades que estos ocasionan en primates, sería una herramienta para su conservación y un aporte significativo para la salud pública. Colectamos e identificamos los parásitos gastrointestinales de 10 especies de primates de la Amazonía ecuatoriana. Se utilizo la técnica de flotación con solución de azúcar sobre saturada (d≈1.28 - 1.33) y la técnica de Ritchie. Las muestras fueron analizadas según factores extrínsecos e intrínsecos de los primates. Los valores generales de prevalencia para protozoarios y helmintos fueron de 17.6% y 55.4% respectivamente. Infecciones con un solo parásito fueron observadas en 46% de las muestras e infecciones con dos o más parásitos fueron observadas en tan solo 17.6% de las muestras. Las hembras tuvieron mayor prevalencia (93.33%) que los machos (68.75%). Más de la mitad de los parásitos encontrados en este estudio (Necator/Ancylostoma, Capillaria sp., Strongylus sp., Entamoeba histolytica, Hymenolepis sp., Oesophagostomum sp.) son una amenaza potencial de transmisión zoonótica. Lagothrix lagotricha tiene la mayor diversidad de parásitos (7) en comparación con las otras especies de primates estudiadas. Este estudio muestra una diversidad de parásitos de importancia zoonótica, lo cual demuestra el interés que deber presentarse tanto para el manejo de fauna silvestre como para programas de salud pública. [less ▲]

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See detailPopulation dynamics and ranging behaviour of a highly provisioned population of Macaca fascicularis in Bali: implications for management
Brotcorne, Fany ULiege; Beudels-Jamar, Roseline; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege

Conference (2012, May 22)

In response to the global landscape anthropization caused by the extensive urbanization and the recruitment of forestlands for cropping, the primate-human commensalism is growing as well as the related ... [more ▼]

In response to the global landscape anthropization caused by the extensive urbanization and the recruitment of forestlands for cropping, the primate-human commensalism is growing as well as the related interspecific conflict. In zones of interface, humans and primates are sympatric and compete for food and spatial resources. Today, we still poorly know the proportion of synanthrope primates and the impact of anthropic pressures. We present here data on 25 years-population dynamics and ranging behaviour of a long-term commensal-living population of long-tail macaques (Macaca fascicularis) in Ubud Monkey Forest, Bali (Indonesia). This population has experienced a dramatic growth over 25 years with an annual increase rate of 11%. In 2011, we counted 614 macaques split in 5 social groups and using an overall home range of 10ha with a 2.41ha core area centred on human provisioning places. We derived a very high population density of 61 macaques per hectare and concluded that this site is overpopulated. Moreover, the conflict between humans and macaques is increasing and requires specific management. As the natural food supply is low in Ubud Monkey Forest, we assume that the high carrying capacity of the site mainly depends on the artificial food supply. The abundance and the quality of artificial food may be the major factor determining such a high population density. The low predation pressure and the habitat compression by destruction of adjacent forests could also influence the positive demographic trend. As a tentative program of population control, we suggest both to lower the caloric content of the food provisioned to macaques and to conduct a sterilization programme. This strategy aims at reducing the conflict with humans and at promoting a sustainable coexistence by reducing birth rates and limiting the macaques’ population growth. [less ▲]

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See detailHome range size and daily path length in a wild troop of northern pigtailed macaques (Macaca leonina): preliminary results
Jose Dominguez, Juan Manuel; Albert, aurélie; Garcia, CJ et al

Conference (2012, March)

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See detailDispersal and regeneration capacity of large-seeded tree species in a forest-savanna mosaic in Western DR Congo
Trolliet, Franck ULiege; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege; Hambuckers, Alain ULiege

Poster (2012)

It is widely recognized that the Congo Basin is affected by numerous anthropogenic pressures. A number of studies proved that hunting and forest fragmentation diminish the diversity and abundance of large ... [more ▼]

It is widely recognized that the Congo Basin is affected by numerous anthropogenic pressures. A number of studies proved that hunting and forest fragmentation diminish the diversity and abundance of large vertebrates, more specifically, of large frugivores. The depletion of those animals can directly affect large-seeded tree species as large seeds closely depend on the community of large frugivorous vertebrates for their dispersal. Then, the disruption of animal mediated seed dispersal is thought to deeply impact the plant regeneration capacity. The forest-savanna mosaic situated in Western DR Congo is an ecotone characterized by naturally occurring forest fragments which are also subject to numerous anthropogenic pressures. Those are very likely to disrupt seed dispersal mechanisms and to alter forest regeneration processes. To date, few studies have considered the effect of such an ecosystem on plant-animal interaction dynamics such as seed dispersal, and none have been done in this region. This study will examine if the early stages of regeneration of the large-seeded tree species Anonidium mannii, namely the dispersal capacity and seedling establishment is affected by forest fragment size. We predict that the small fragment size will negatively affect the regeneration capacity of this species. To test this assumption, we will work along a gradient of forest fragment sizes to define the composition of the seed disperser communities. For each disperser assemblage, we will evaluate the quantitative capacity of seed dispersal by combining direct focal observations and camera trapping. A literature review on each disperser species seed retention time and habitat use will allow the computation of the seed dispersal kernels. We will also evaluate the effect of seed ingestion by a presumably important seed disperser, the bonobo, Pan paniscus, on its germination capacity. Seeds will be collected from dung to evaluate the effect of seed ingestion on the rate and velocity of germination. Finally, we will study the predation pressure exerted on dispersed and non-dispersed seeds and seedlings by setting up two sets of seeds below the canopy of parent trees and away from any conspecific trees. One set will be dispersed unprotected to seed predators; another one will be enclosed in a cage and permit seeds to germinate, allowing us to evaluate the herbivores pressure on seedlings. [less ▲]

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See detailBonobos, Pan paniscus, in the forest-savannah mosaics of West DR Congo: does spatial structure influence the forest use dynamics?
Serckx, Adeline ULiege; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege; Beudels-Jamar, Roseline

Conference (2012)

Bonobos, Pan paniscus, are endemic to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) but the species’ range is still not precisely known. For example, the populations from West DRC have only been identified in ... [more ▼]

Bonobos, Pan paniscus, are endemic to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) but the species’ range is still not precisely known. For example, the populations from West DRC have only been identified in 2005, following inventories conducted by WWF. This region is characterized by a forest-savannah mosaic, a particular ecotone with naturally fragmented forests, in which bonobos have hardly ever been studied in comparison with those evolving in central DRC rainforests. The area also increasingly includes numerous anthropogenic activities including logging and cattle ranching. Effective long-term conservation programs are then essential for the survival of bonobos’ populations. We decided to focus our study on bonobos’ forest use dynamics, testing spatial structure influence on bonobos’ density and forest use. This hypothesis is based on a landscape ecology theory, the pattern-process paradigm, establishing a triangular link between the structure, the composition and the ecological processes of a landscape. We used the interior-to-edge ratio to classify our study area (200km² of forests) in 5 categories of forest patches: (i) corridors (0.1 to 5.5km², ratio of 0), (ii) small patches (3.4 to 4.3km², ratios between 0.23 and 0.33), (iii) middle patch with edge area predominant (13.8km², ratio of 0.7), (iv) middle patch with interior area predominant (22.3km², ratio of 1.17), (v) big patch (122.2km², ratio of 1.43). We walked transects (total effort: 126km) to identify habitats (landscape composition) and bonobos’ use indices (nests and food remains – landscape ecological process). Results unexpectedly showed that bonobos use all forest patches, even corridors, mostly used for feeding. Small patches even include higher nest density than the big patch. Moreover, habitats with predominant Marantaceae understory are correlated with higher nest density. The study is still in process and sampling areas will be increased in further field work. The first results however already indicate that we could elaborate a model predicting bonobos’ presence according to habitats and spatial structure and designate forest patches to protect as a priority. This information should allow formulating specific management recommendations for regional conservation programs and logging concessions [less ▲]

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See detailDoes edge effect influence Bonobos, Pan paniscus, forest use dynamics: a case study in a forest-savannah mosaic of West DR Congo
Serckx, Adeline ULiege; Beudels-Jamar, Roseline; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege

Conference (2012)

Our study helps understand how fragmented forests affect bonobos forest use. Previous studies already reveal that habitat types influence bonobos’ densities, but forests’ spatial structure could also have ... [more ▼]

Our study helps understand how fragmented forests affect bonobos forest use. Previous studies already reveal that habitat types influence bonobos’ densities, but forests’ spatial structure could also have an impact. In the current context of deforestation and increasing illegal concessions, approaching such questions should help orient future conservation programs. We focus on the influence of edge effect on bonobos forest use, presuming that they avoid areas with non mature forests and increased human pressure. We travelled along transects (113km total) to define habitat types and to record bonobos indices (tracks, food remains and nesting sites) in 200km² of forests in Southwestern Lake Tumba Region. Our results show that bonobos clearly prefer specific habitats for nesting, and, within these nest-forest types, an understory of Marantaceae Haumania sp. is preferentially chosen. To evaluate edge effect on nesting behavior, we counted nesting sites in 100m distance classes from the forest edge. Our results indicate a uniform distribution of nesting sites, but with a negative edge effect in the first 100m. When we analyzed tracks and food remains distribution, we didn’t find any habitat type preferences or any edge effect. These results indicate that, although bonobos are known to favor dense forests, they can also adapt to fragmented forests environment. Habitat types appear to be more relevant to understand their distribution and range. [less ▲]

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See detailUne approche participative des interactions entre les hommes, femmes et la biodiversité de la forêt tropicale dans la région du lac Tumba, RDC
Halleux, C.; Dendoncker, N.; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege et al

Conference (2012)

L'objectif du projet BIOSERF est d'évaluer la durabilité d'un écosystème de forêt tropicale humide dans l'Ouest de la République démocratique du Congo sous des pressions démographiques, sociétales et ... [more ▼]

L'objectif du projet BIOSERF est d'évaluer la durabilité d'un écosystème de forêt tropicale humide dans l'Ouest de la République démocratique du Congo sous des pressions démographiques, sociétales et climatiques. Le projet se concentre sur les interactions entre la flore, la faune et la population humaine locale pour comprendre les processus modifiant la biodiversité et la disponibilité en services écosystémiques dans des zones tropicales humides. En collaboration étroite avec une ONG locale, il utilisera un modèle de végétation dynamique (CARAIB) qui sera associé à un modèle multi-agents, afin d'analyser l'utilisation de différents services écosystémiques comme par exemple la production de plantes médicinales, de bois et d'autres produits forestiers, ou de services liés à la création de réserves naturelles. Le modèle de végétation sera adapté pour prendre en compte les processus de régénération de plusieurs espèces de plantes, sélectionnées pour leur usage par les communautés humaines locales. Pour ce faire, une sélection de 5 espèces d'arbres utilisées fréquemment ou traditionnellement sera effectuée basée sur les résultats d'une enquête sociologique. Une étude combinée des communautés de disperseurs de graines permettra de prendre en compte leur rôle dans la régénération de la forêt. Le modèle multi-agents, quant à lui, devrait voir le jour lors d'un processus de modélisation d'accompagnement. Toutes les hypothèses de base de la modélisation peuvent être remises en cause durant le processus, au contact de la réalité du terrain. Cette méthode devrait permettre de mettre en débat les incertitudes liées à la notion de service écosystémique. A travers une approche post-normale, cette démarche de modélisation a pour vocation de faire dialoguer scientifiques, citoyens et décideurs et ceci afin d'améliorer la qualité du processus de prise de décision collective. La conception de différents scénarios permettra d'explorer différentes pistes de futurs possibles et/ou désirables. [less ▲]

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See detailRanging behaviour and sleeping sites in Macaca fascicularis at Bali Barat National Park, Indonesia
Brotcorne, Fany ULiege; Maslarov, Cindy; Dosogne, Thibaut et al

Conference (2011, October 26)

Ranging behaviour and sleeping site selection are important aspects of primate ecology in their adaptation to the environment. Several non-exclusive factors have been suggested to explain sleeping site ... [more ▼]

Ranging behaviour and sleeping site selection are important aspects of primate ecology in their adaptation to the environment. Several non-exclusive factors have been suggested to explain sleeping site selection in primates: predation avoidance, food resources proximity, interactions with conspecifics, physical comfort, and parasite avoidance. We tested the role of some factors in a group of Macaca fascicularis living in a human-modified landscape in Bali Barat National Park, during 3 months from April-June 2011. Despite the large area of available forest, the group’s home range was centred around human-settlements (park headquarters). The home range size, as well as the average daily range and daily travel, decreased over the study months. These results correlated with the increase of human presence inside the park over the corresponding months. Regarding sleeping sites, the use pattern also seemed to be influenced by the attraction to human settlements. Indeed, macaques slept more than expected close to human-settlements and this tendency increased over the months. 75% of the 56 observed nights were spent inside the core area, an argument for the role of intergroup competition avoidance. In contradiction with the predation avoidance assumption, the DBH and the height of sleeping trees were not significantly greater than those of control trees. On the other hand, most of sleeping trees had no liana on the trunk and a high arboreal connectivity with surrounding trees. Also, the rate of consecutive sleeping site reuse was very low (12%), minimizing the detection by predators. We conclude that the main strategy of this M. fascicularis group could be sleeping not too far from humans because it is advantageous for predator avoidance and proximity to human food, but that additional influences should not be neglected. [less ▲]

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See detailSeasonal variations of ranging pattern in pigtailed macaques: influence of wild and human resources
Albert, Aurélie ULiege; Savini, Tommaso ULiege; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege

Conference (2011, September)

Numerous studies have highlighted the influence of food availability on primate behaviour. Our research aims at understanding the ranging pattern of a troop of northern pigtailed macaques (Macaca leonina ... [more ▼]

Numerous studies have highlighted the influence of food availability on primate behaviour. Our research aims at understanding the ranging pattern of a troop of northern pigtailed macaques (Macaca leonina) living around the visitor center of the Khao Yai National Park, Thailand. The frugivorous pigtailed macaques are supposed to adapt their ranging pattern to the spatio-temporal distribution of fruiting trees. However, the presence of humans, and thus, of human food, may also have an impact on their home range size and location. We followed the troop during 12 months and recorded its diet and progression within the home range (GPS points every 30 minutes). On monthly kernels defining the home range surface, we superimposed a grid of 110x110 m cells. We analysed the spatio-temporal distribution of fruiting trees in botanical transects and converted it into a food abundance index (FAI). Given their semi-terrestriality decreasing travel costs, we predicted that macaques should increase their range during the period of low fruit abundance to gather a sufficient amount of high-quality food (fruits). To the contrary, our results showed that the size of the troop’s home range decreased during fruit scarcity (dry season). The diet analysis showed that during this period, macaques used human food, a high-quality resource, as fallback food which concentration around human settlements made the long travel no more necessary. Alternately, in period of fruit abundance, a correlation between the FAI and the number of GPS points from macaques for each home range cell showed that macaques spent more time in places with a higher abundance of some fruit species, in particular some considered as important in their diet. Finally, in this peculiar situation of macaques living close to human managed areas, both wild and human resources’ spatio-temporal distribution influence the size and location of the troop’s home range [less ▲]

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See detailConserver la diversité des primates
Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege

Conference given outside the academic context (2011)

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See detailSustainability of tropical forest biodiversity and services under climate and human pressure (BIOSERF): tracking the regeneration of human-used plants through dispersal by the animal community
Huynen, Marie-Claude ULiege; Beudels, R.; Baert, A. et al

Conference (2011, June)

The objective of the BIOSERF project is to assess the sustainability of a tropical humid forest ecosystem and the local human communities in southern Congo under future climate, demographic and societal ... [more ▼]

The objective of the BIOSERF project is to assess the sustainability of a tropical humid forest ecosystem and the local human communities in southern Congo under future climate, demographic and societal changes. The project focuses on the interactions between flora, fauna and local human population to understand the processes affecting biodiversity and ecosystem services in tropical humid areas, with the objective of setting up mechanisms to preserve local biodiversity. In close collaboration with a local NGO, it will use a dynamic vegetation model (CARAIB) which will be integrated within an agent-based model, to analyze the impacts of different ecosystem services in a tropical humid area, e.g. the production of medicinal plants, of wood and other forest products, or the services provided by the building of natural reserves. The vegetation model will be upgraded to take into account the process of regeneration of several plant species, selected for their use by local human populations, through a quantitative and qualitative description of plant dispersal by the animal community. To do so, a selection of five tree species frequently or traditionally used will be made based on the results of a sociological survey. Observations (direct or through camera trapping) of a sample of the selected species will allow identifying the main dispersers and the pattern of seed shadow they generate. Integrated into the CARAIB model, these results will allow figuring how the evolution of the dispersal community under pressures of climate change, habitat loss and hunting, but also potentially placed under managed protection could affect the services available to the human community. [less ▲]

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