The 85th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (2016)


Comparative growth and static allometry in the genus Chlorocebus

CHRISTOPHER A. SCHMITT1,2, TRUDY R. TURNER3, JENNIFER DANZY CRAMER4, JOSEPH LORENZ5, J. PAUL GROBLER6 and NELSON B. FREIMER2.

1Department of Anthropology, Boston University, 2Center for Neurobehavioral Genetics, University of California - Los Angeles, 3Department of Anthropology, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, 4Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Women's Studies, American Military University and American Public University, 5Department of Anthropology and Museum Studies, Central Washington University, 6Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, University of the Free State

April 16, 2016 , Atrium Ballroom A/B Add to calendar

Characterizing variation in growth across populations is critical to understanding multiple aspects of development in primates, including within-taxon developmental plasticity and the evolution of life history patterns. Growth in wild primates has often been reported and directly compared across larger taxonomic groups and within social groups, but comparisons are rarely investigated across widely dispersed populations of a single taxon. With the Vervet Phenome-Genome Project and the International Vervet Research Consortium, we trapped 936 vervet monkeys of all ages representing three populations (Kenyan pygerythrus, South African pygerythrus, and sabaeus from St. Kitts & Nevis). We gathered 10 different body measurements from each including mass, body breadth and length, segmental limb lengths, and chest circumference. To gain a better understanding of how ontogenetic patterns vary in these populations, we calculated bivariate allometry coefficients, derived using PCA on log-transformed and z-standardized trait values, and compared them to isometric vector coefficients. Within all population samples, around weaning age most traits showed a negative allometric relationship to body length. As each population ages, however, distinct patterns emerge, showing population differences in onset and intensity of growth among traits. In concordance with other analyses on growth in these populations, our results suggest that there exist relative differences in patterns of growth between Chlorocebus populations, further suggesting selection for unique developmental pathways in each.