ANTH 2301 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Foramen Magnum, Southeast Asia, Encephalization Quotient

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Primate Behavior
Linnaean classification scheme
o classification for humans:
Kingdom is Animalia
Phylum is Chordata (notochord)
Class is Mammalia
Order is primates
Characteristics of primates
o Four functionally distinct tooth types, they have retained all tooth types
Incisors, canines, premolars, molars
o Generalized limb structure (from postcranium down/from neck down)
o Retention of clavicle (collarbone) allows for shoulder and arm flexibility, which
is beneficial in an arboreal environment
o Replacement of claws by nails nails are associated with tactile pads, allowing us
to have a better sense of touch
o Reduction in the sense of smell
Rhinencephalon, turbinate bones
o Trend toward orthograde (upright) posture
Location of the Foramen magnum
o Elaboration of the brain larger, more wrinkled
Encephalization quotient brain size/body size
o Tendency for single births other animals have litters, and our offspring are born
more premature/immature so they must go through a learning process
o Live in social groups
Elaboration of the visual apparatus (occipital lobe) - Primates have better vision than
many other animals, we have larger occipital lobes
o Convergence
o Frontation
o Approximation distance between the orbits, it is small because we don’t have a
snout, the orbits are in front and close together
o Binocular we don’t see double or two views
o Stereoscopic we see in three dimensions
o Color we have cones and rods
In other animals, like cats, the muscles for chewing are connected to the muscles of the
eye, this is not the case for primates, our chewing and visual mechanisms are separate
Strephsarinis have vertical clinging and leaping motions, they are mostly nocturnal
Haplarhrinis have the closure of the eyes and have a variety of locomotion functions and
they are mostly diurnal
The size of orbits can reveal whether it is nocturnal or diurnal
Prosemians (strepsirhines) vertical clinging and leaping
o Lemurs: Madagascar
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