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Anim Behav. 1999 Dec;58(6):1207-1215.

Social anxiety, relationships and self-directed behaviour among wild female olive baboons.

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1
Department of Cognitive and Behavioural Science, University of Tokyo

Abstract

Self-directed behaviour (SDB) can be used as a behavioural indicator of stress and anxiety in nonhuman primates (Maestripieri et al. 1992, Animal Behaviour, 44, 967-979). We investigated the effect of nearest neighbours' relative dominance status on the SDB of sexually mature female olive baboons, Papio anubis. When the animal nearest to (within 5 m of) a female was a dominant individual, SDB rates (a combined measure of self-scratching, self-grooming, self-touching, body shaking and yawning) increased by ca. 40% over those observed when the nearest neighbour was a subordinate. The results indicate that (1) SDB can be used as a measure of uncertainty during the social interactions of cercopithecine primates and (2) as there was considerable variation in SDB response according to the nature of the dominant individual, SDB can be used to assess relationship security (i.e. the perceived predictability of a relationship for one partner). Finally, in combination with measures of affiliation rate, SDB may provide insight into relationship value. Copyright 1999 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

PMID:
10600141
DOI:
10.1006/anbe.1999.1250
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