Thursday, 22 August 2019

Males of a feather flock together

Behavioral scientists tested biological principle on free-living Assamese macaques

Date:August 14, 2019
Source:Deutsches Primatenzentrum (DPZ)/German Primate Center

"Birds of a feather flock together" or rather "opposites attract"? The recently published study on male macaques in Thailand speaks for the former: Behavioral biologists from the German Primate Centre -- Leibniz Institute for Primate Research and psychologists from the University of Göttingen have observed that the more similar male Assamese macaques are in their personality, the closer they get and the stronger their social bonds. The scientists were able to rule out the possibility that the causality works the other way round, i.e. that close partners would become more and more similar over time, because the males' personality remained stable even if they migrated between groups and thus changed their social partners. It is suggested that this behavior provides an evolutionary advantage: If the friend has a similar personality, this facilitates communication and coordination and thus cooperation in critical situations (Animal Behaviour).

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