Intertwined Evolution of Human Brain and Brawn

The cognitive differences between humans and our closest living cousins, the chimpanzees, are staggeringly obvious. Although we share strong superficial physical similarities, we have been able to use our incredible mental abilities to construct civilizations and manipulate our environment to our will, allowing us to take over our planet and walk on the moon while the chimps grub around in…

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A Marmoset Never Forgets

Scientists studying social learning in animals have shown how easy it can be to introduce a new behavior into a group and watch it spread from individual to individual. However, not nearly as many studies are devoted to following up on the establishment of new behaviors to see if those behavioral traditions persist. In a new study,Tina Gunhold, Jorg Massen,…

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Do Monkeys Grieve for Fallen Mates?

The two marmosets—small, New World monkeys—had been a closely bonded couple for more than 3 years. Then, one fateful day, the female had a terrible accident. She fell out of a tree and hit her head on a ceramic vase that happened to be underneath on the forest floor. Her partner left two of their infants alone in the tree…

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Spider Monkey Society is Sexually Segregated

Ew, boys! A species of spider monkey has been found to live in strictly sexually segregated societies, apparently because the males attack the females if they spend too much time together. They are the first non-human primate species known to systematically separate along gender lines. Geoffroy’s spider monkeys, Ateles Geoffroyi, live in loose groups of a few dozen individuals, and anecdotal evidence…

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