Doctoral Candidate LYDIA E. O. LIGHT
Research Interests: Research Interests: I am interested in exploring ecological explanations for within-species variation in behavior and ecology as well as the evolution of pair-bonds and pair-living social systems. In particular, my research focuses on the ways in which nonhuman primates cope with harsh ecological conditions and sub-optimal habitats. My field site is located in a dry, mosaic forest in western Thailand and I conduct habitat-based comparisons between groups of wild white-handed gibbons living in different forest types (evergreen compared to deciduous dipterocarp) focusing on ranging behavior, diet, energy balance, and social behavior. I utilize remote sensing data and GIS technology and plan to use these techniques in my future projects to examine the relationships between neighboring groups, particularly during the height of the dry season. During the dry season, gibbons depend heavily on liana food sources, and my future project will investigate the nutritional quality of these key resources. Future research will consider ways in which these ecological differences may contribute to the prevalence of polyandrous social groups in these primarily pair-living nonhuman primates.
Advisor: Dr. Thad Q. Bartlett
Degrees: B.Sc. Motion Pictures and Anthropology, The University of Miami (2001); MA Anthropology, The University of Texas at San Antonio (2011)
Dissertation Topic: Life At the Extreme: The Behavioral Ecology of White-Handed Gibbons (Hylobates lar) Living In a Dry Forest In Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary, Western Thailand.
Publications : (In review) Bartlett TQ, Light LEO, Brockelman WY. Long-Term Home Range Stability In Wild White-Handed Gibbons in Khao Yai National Park, Thailand. American Journal of Primatology.