Human provisioning of wildlife with food is a widespread global practice that occurs in multiple socio-cultural contexts. Provisioning of primates by humans is known to impact their activity budgets, diets and ranging patterns. Primates are also keystone species in tropical forests through their role as seed dispersers; yet there is no information on how provisioning might affect this important ecological function. In this talk, I will share my findings on this aspect based on my observations on rhesus macaques Macaca mulatta at the Buxa Tiger Reserve, India.

Asmita Sengupta is a Senior Research Fellow at the National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), India. She was awarded her doctoral degree by Manipal University in November, 2015. Her thesis was entitled "Seed dispersal by rhesus macaques Macaca mulatta" and her work was conducted under the guidance of Prof. Sindhu Radhakrishna and Prof. Anindya Sinha at NIAS. She has a Bachelor's degree in Zoology from the University of Calcutta, India, and a Master's degree in Forestry from the Forest Research Institute, India. Her research interests include tropical forest dynamics, human-wildlife conflict and primate ecology.