Behavior

All bushbabies are typically arboreal and nocturnal. They have a reflecting layer (tapetum lucidum) behind the retina. It has been shown for the thick-tailed bushbaby (Otolemur cras-sicaudatus) that flat crystals of riboflavin are responsible for the reflecting properties of the tapetum and the resulting golden yellow eyeshine. Although all bushbaby species have relatively long hindlimbs, with conspicuous elongation of the calcaneum and navicular in the ankle region, there is considerable variation in their patterns of locomotion. Most species are active leapers, but only some of them are specialized vertical-clingers and leapers that can jump several meters between supports and show bipedal hopping along broad horizontal branches and on the ground (e.g., Galago alleni and Galago moholi). Many species are primarily quadrupedal (e.g., Galagoides demidoff and Otolemur garnettii), and some (e.g., Otolemur crassicaudatus) leap relatively rarely. All species show scent marking of some kind and most if not all show the unusual pattern of "urine washing" in which the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet are impregnated with urine, such that urine traces are deposited on the substrate during locomotion. Although most of them are solitary foragers, all bushbabies live in social networks of some

A Senegal bushbaby (Galago senegalensis). (Photo by Peter Davey. Bruce Coleman, Inc. Reproduced by permission.)

kind, involving occasional encounters within overlapping ranges of adult males and females and sharing of nest sites during the daytime. Species differ in features such as the number of individuals in a social network, the amount of contact shown during nocturnal activity, the degree of tolerance among adults and subadults of the same sex, and the stability of nesting groups.

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