Eva Wikberg

Assistant Professor, Anthropology

Eva Wikberg


I investigate links between conservation and evolutionary theory, with a focus on dispersal, reproductive patterns, social bonds, and genetic structure. The broader goal of my research is to understand how these links translate into conservation outlooks for primate populations that experience different types of anthropogenic interactions. I am a co-director of the Boabeng-Fiema colobus project in Ghana. Research at this site is key for the long-term survival of the critically endangered black-and-white colobus (Colobus vellerosus) that are the focus of the study. I also maintain a long-term research collaboration in the Área de Conservación Guanacaste in Costa Rica, which is inhabited by three primate species (Alouatta palliata, Ateles geoffroyi, and Cebus capucinus imitator) with different dispersal patterns, social organizations, diets, and habitat requirements. In this study system, my research aims to determine whether their behavioral flexibility and genetic variation are sufficient for coping with the rapid environmental changes that these, and most other primate populations, are currently experiencing.


  • Ph.D. in Biological Anthropology, University of Calgary (2012)
  • M.Sc. in Biology, Umeå University (2002)


In Review      Jack KJ, Kulick N, Schoof V, Wikberg E, Kawamura S, and Fedigan LM. And baby makes three: Factors influencing postpartum changes in male-female affiliative interactions in white-faced capuchins. Submitted to the American Journal of Primatology March 2024.

Revise            Arseneau-Robar TJM, Teichroeb JA, Macintosh A, Saj TL, Glotfelty, Lucci S, Sicotte P, and Wikberg EC*. When population growth intensifies intergroup competition, female colobus monkeys free-ride less. Published on bioRxiv, 2023.05.05.539387. Submitted to Scientific Reports June 2023 with minor revisions required.

Accepted       Campos FA, Wikberg EC, Orkin JD, Park Y, Snyder-Mackler N, Cheves Hernandez S, Fedigan LM, Gurven M, Higham JP, Jack KM, Melin AD. Wild capuchin monkeys as a model system for investigating the social and ecological determinants of aging. Philosophical Transactions B.

2024               Samartino S, Christie D, Penna A, Sicotte P, Ting N, and Wikberg EC*. Social network dynamics and gut microbiota composition during alpha male challenges in Colobus vellerosus. Submitted to Primates August 2023. Published online first.

2024               Samartino S , Bartlett TQ, and Wikberg EC*. Characterizing the vaginal microbiome in a sexually fluid primate (Pan paniscus). Folia Primatologica: 1-12.

2024               Wikberg EC, Glotfelty E, Yeboah Adu B, Koranteng R, Kodum C, Owusu Antwi B, Boahen A. Predictors of population estimates in a critically endangered species (Colobus vellerosus). Primate Conservation 38: 1-12.

2024               Nokelainen O, Winters S, Rowe Z, Campos FA, Wikberg EC, Howell N, Caro T.

                       Black-and-white pelage as protective coloration in colobus monkeys. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 78: 23.

2023               Teichroeb JA, Fox SA, Samartino S, Wikberg EC, and Sicotte P. Non-reproductive sexual behavior in wild white-thighed colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus). Archives of Sexual Behavior 52: 2295-2301.

2022a             Wikberg EC, Kelley E, Sussman RW, and Ting N. The African colobines: Behavioral flexibility and conservation in a changing world. In Natural History of Primates: A systematic study of ecology and behavior, Hart D and Colquhoun I (eds). Rowman & Littlefield, NY, pp 297-334.

2022b             Wikberg EC, Gonzalez S, Rodriguez C, and Sicotte P. Joint intergroup aggression in female colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus) is associated with grooming bonds, male participation, and group size. American Journal of Primatology 84: e23355.

2022c              Wikberg EC, Jack KM, Campos FA, Bergstrom ML, Kawamura S, and Fedigan LM. Should I stay or should I go now: Dispersal decisions and reproductive success in male white-faced capuchins. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 76: 88 (special issue on measuring reproductive success in the wild).

2020               Melin A, Jack K, Hogan J, Campos F, Wikberg E, King-Bailey G, Webb S, Kalbitzer U, Asensio N, Murillo-Chacon E, Cheves Hernandez S, Guadamuz Chavarria A, Schaffner C, Kawamura S, Aureli F, Fedigan L. Contributions from long-term research on three primate species in the Área de Conservación Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Biotropica 52(6): 1041-1064.

2020               Wikberg EC, Christie D, Sicotte P, and Ting N. Social interactions across groups of colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus) explain similarities in their gut microbiomes. Animal Behaviour 163: 17e31.

2019                Tombak KJ, Wikberg EC, Rubenstein DI, Chapman CA. Reciprocity and rotating social favour among females in egalitarian primate societies. Animal behavior 157: 189-200.

2019                Goodfellow C, Whitney T, Christie D, Sicotte P, Wikberg EC*, Ting N. Divergence in gut microbial communities mirrors a social group fission event in a black-and-white colobus monkey (Colobus vellerosus). American Journal of Primatology 18: e22966.

2018               Wikberg EC, Jack KM, Kawamura S, and Fedigan LM. The effect of dispersal and reproductive patterns on the evolution of sociality in white-faced capuchins. Essays in honour of Linda M. Fedigan, Developments in Primatology: Progress and Prospects, Springer, NY, pp 117-132.

2017               Brasington LF, Wikberg EC, Kawamura S, Fedigan LM, and Jack KM. Infant mortality in white-faced capuchins: The impact of alpha male replacements. American Journal of Primatology 79: e22725.

2017               Kalbitzer U, Bergstrom ML, Carnegie SD, Wikberg EC, Kawamura S, Campos FA, Jack KM, and Fedigan LM. Female sociality and sexual conflict shape infant survival in a Neotropical primate. PNAS 114: 1892-1897.

2017               Sicotte P, Teichroeb JA, Vayro JV, Fox S, and Wikberg EC*. Female dispersal post-takeover is related to male quality in Colobus vellerosus. American Journal of Primatology 79: e22436.

2017               Wikberg EC, Jack KM, Fedigan LM, Campos FA, Sato A, Bergstrom ML, Hiwatashi T, and Kawamura S. Inbreeding avoidance and female mate choice shape paternity patterns in a primate species with exceptionally long male tenures (Cebus capucinus imitator). Molecular Ecology 26: 653-667.

2016               Bădescu I, Wikberg EC, MacDonald LJ, Fox SA, Vayro J, and Sicotte P. Infanticide pressure accelerates infant development in a wild primate. Animal Behaviour 114: 231-239.

2016               Sargeant E, Wikberg EC, Kawamura S, Jack KM, and Fedigan LM. Paternal recognition and infant care in white-faced capuchins (Cebus capucinus). American Journal of Primatology 78: 659-668.

2016               Vayro J, Fedigan LM, Ziegler T, Crotty A, Ataman R, Clendenning R, Potvin-Rosselet E, Wikberg EC, and Sicotte P. Hormonal correlates of life-history characteristics in wild female Colobus vellerosus. Primates 57: 509-519.

2015               Bădescu I, Sicotte P, Ting N, and Wikberg EC*. Female parity, maternal kinship, infant age and sex influence natal attraction and infant handling in a wild colobine (Colobus vellerosus). American Journal of Primatology 77:376–387.

2015               Sargeant E, Wikberg EC, Kawamura S, and Fedigan LM. Allonursing in white-faced capuchins (Cebus capucinus) provides evidence for cooperate care of infants. Behaviour 152: 1841-1869.

2015               Schoof VAM, Wikberg EC, Fedigan LM, Jack KM, Ziegler TE, and Kawamura S. Infanticides during periods of social stability: kinship, resumption of ovarian cycling, and mating access in white-faced capuchins (Cebus capucinus). Neotropical Primates 21: 192-196.

2015               Wikberg EC, Ting N, and Sicotte P. Demographic factors are associated with between-group variation in the grooming networks of female colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus). International Journal of Primatology 36:124–142.

2014               Teichroeb JA, Wikberg EC, Sicotte P, and Ting N. Factors influencing male affiliation and coalitions in a species with male dispersal and intense male-male competition, Colobus vellerosus. Behaviour 151: 1045-1066.

2014a             Wikberg EC, Ting N, and Sicotte P. Kinship and similarity in residency status structure female social networks in black-and-white colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus). American Journal of Physical Anthropology 153: 365-376.

2014b             Wikberg EC, Ting N, and Sicotte P. Familiarity is more important than phenotypic similarity in shaping social relationships in a facultative female dispersed primate, Colobus vellerosus. Behavioural Processes 106: 27-35.

2014c             Wikberg EC, Jack KM, Campos FA, Fedigan LM, Sato A, Bergstrom ML, Hiwatashi T, and Kawamura S. The effect of male parallel dispersal on kin composition of groups in white-faced capuchins (Cebus capucinus). Animal Behaviour 96: 9-17.

2013               Wikberg EC, Teichroeb JA, Bădescu I, and Sicotte P. Individualistic female dominance hierarchies with varying strength in a highly folivorous population of black-and-white colobus. Behaviour 150: 295-320.

2012               Teichroeb JA, Wikberg EC, Bădescu I, MacDonald LJ, and Sicotte P. Infanticide risk and male quality influence optimal group composition for Colobus vellerosus. Behavioral Ecology 6: 1348-1359.

2012               Wikberg EC, Sicotte P, Campos FA, and Ting N. Between-group variation in female dispersal, kin composition of groups, and proximity patterns in black-and-white colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus). PLoS One: e48740.

2011                Teichroeb JA, Wikberg EC, and Sicotte P. Dispersal in male ursine colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus): influence of age, rank and contact with other groups on dispersal decisions. Behaviour 148: 765-793.

2009                    Teichroeb JA, Wikberg EC, and Sicotte P. Female dispersal patterns in six groups of ursine colobus (Colobus vellerosus): infanticide avoidance is important. Behaviour 146: 551-582.

2008               Gros-Louis J, Perry S, Fichtel C, Wikberg EC, Gilkenson H, Wofsy S, and Fuentes A. Vocal repertoire of Cebus capucinus: acoustic structure, context and usage. International Journal of Primatology 29: 641-670.

2007               Wittig RM, Crockford C, Wikberg EC, Seyfarth RM, and Cheney DL. Kin-mediated reconciliation substitutes for direct reconciliation in female baboons. Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences 274: 1109-1115.

2003               Perry S, Manson JH, Dower G, and Wikberg EC. White-faced capuchins cooperate to rescue a groupmate from a boa constrictor. Folia Primatologica 74: 109-111.