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author:("oesch, C.")
1.  Long-term research sites as refugia for threatened and over-harvested species 
Biology Letters  2011;7(5):723-726.
The presence of researchers, ecotourists or rangers inside protected areas is generally assumed to provide a protective effect for wildlife populations, mainly by reducing poaching pressure. However, this assumption has rarely been empirically tested. Here, we evaluate and quantify the conservation benefits of the presence of a long-term research area in Taï National Park, Côte d'Ivoire. A wildlife survey following 225 km of line transects revealed considerably higher primate and duiker encounter rates within the research area when compared with adjacent areas. This positive effect was particularly pronounced for threatened and over-harvested species, such as the endangered red colobus monkey (Procolobus badius). This pattern was clearly mirrored by a reversed gradient in signs of poaching, which decreased towards and inside the research area, a trend that was also supported with park-wide data. This study demonstrates that even relatively simple evidence-based analytical approaches can bridge the gap between conservation theory and practice. In addition, it emphasizes the value of establishing long-term research sites as an integral part of protected area management.
doi:10.1098/rsbl.2011.0155
PMCID: PMC3169048  PMID: 21450724
conservation; research; line transect; threatened species; protected area
2.  Role of Nonbehavioral Factors in Adjusting Long Bone Diaphyseal Structure in Free-ranging Pan troglodytes 
International Journal of Primatology  2008;29(6):1401-1420.
Limb bones deform during locomotion and can resist the deformations by adjusting their shapes. For example, a tubular-shaped diaphysis best resists variably-oriented deformations. As behavioral profiles change during adulthood, patterns of bone deformation may exhibit age trends. Habitat characteristics, e.g., annual rainfall, tree density, and elevation changes, may influence bone deformations by eliciting individual components of behavioral repertoires and suppressing others, or by influencing movements during particular components. Habituated chimpanzee communities provide a unique opportunity to examine these factors because of the availability of morphological data and behavioral observations from known-age individuals inhabiting natural habitats. We evaluated adult femora and humeri of 18 female and 10 male free-ranging chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) from communities in Gombe (Tanzania), Mahale Mountains (Tanzania), and Taï Forest (Côte d’Ivoire) National Parks. We compare cross sections at several locations (35%, 50%, 65% diaphyseal lengths). Community comparisons highlight different diaphyseal shapes of Taï females relative to Mahale and Gombe females, particularly in humeral diaphyses. Age trends in diaphyseal shapes are consistent with reduced activity levels in general, not only reduced arboreal activity. Age-related bone loss is apparent among community females, but is less striking among males. Community trends in diaphyseal shape are qualitatively consistent with ranked annual rainfall at localities, tree density, and elevation change or ruggedness of terrain. Habitat characteristics may contribute to variation in diaphyseal shape among chimpanzee communities, much like among modern human groups, but verification awaits further rigorous experimental and comparative analyses.
doi:10.1007/s10764-008-9297-y
PMCID: PMC2758400  PMID: 19816545
aging; Gombe; locomotor behavior; Mahale; Pan troglodytes; Taï

Results 1-2 (2)