We have a new educational tool for environmental education teachers! Matt Ziegler, a research assistant at the Lomas Barbudal Monkey Project, has developed a new website designed to show people what monkeys do all day, and what our research team documents about their behavior. He has created a website: http://www.winslowhomerday.net.
In order to help Matt develop this project, we followed a single infant, Winslow Homer (son of Dali, the alpha female of Abby’s group) for an entire day, using our usual protocol for data collection. We carry a Garmin GPS unit in our backpacks as we follow Winslow Homer, collecting behavioral data. Matt has superimposed this track on a Google Earth image so that you can see where the monkeys went and what the habitat looks like. This was done in the dry season, so you can see that the forest is green by the rivers, but losing its leaves elsewhere; the yellow trees are flowering Tabebuia trees. You can use your cursor to follow the route that Winslow’s family took that day. As you click on the icons, you will see a list of time-stamped notes, indicating what Winslow and the monkeys near him were doing at that time. We use a special short-hand coding system to collect these data, but those notes are expanded into English phrases here so that they will be more intelligible to the reader. If you go to the legend in the upper left hand corner you will see that you can select the kinds of notes you would like to see (e.g. grooming behavior, feeding, coalitions). Biographical notes about the monkeys in Winslow’s group are available from the “Monkey Biographies” menu at the top of the page. Winslow Homer turns out to be a particularly interesting monkey. A few months after the day portrayed in this website, Winslow broke the project’s record for youngest male ever to migrate from his birth group, doing so at age 14 months. This happened when he accidentally ended up in Rambo’s group after an intergroup battle between his own group (Abby’s) and Rambo’s group at a fig tree. This brave little monkey handled the move very well, making friends instantly and adopting Mombassa as his new mother.