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Chapter 4

chapter four: living primates.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Michael Schillaci

Introduction to Evolutionary Anthropology – Shawn M. Lehman Chapter 4 – Living Primates Primate Taxonomy and Characteristics Primates belong to the order Mammalia Mammals are characterized by general morphology, thermoregulators, have hair/fur, four-chambered heart, spinal cord, neocortex region in the brain (sensory perception), spatial reasoning, conscious thoughts and are homeothermic (ability to use energy from food to produce heat and self-regulate internal temperature. Mammals are the only animals with sweat glands (used to cool the body down using the process of evaporation). Characters that set primates apart from other mammals  Grasping hands and feet  Opposable big toe or thumb  Flat nail on at least one digit (allows precision grip)  Reduced olfactory apparatus (smell)  Large brain size  Dermatoglyphics with ridges (fingerprints)  Postorbital bar  Petrosally formed auditory bulla  Collarbone (extensive shoulder movements)  Radius and Ulna (allows precise hand movements)  Forward facing eyes and stereoscopic vision (overlapping field of vision)  Due to their vision, primates have depth perception  Long periods of infancy, childhood, and adulthood (long life span)  Greater parental investment  Socialize, reproduce with the members of the same species Primates are of interest to anthropologists because they can help us to study human evolution through the principal of homology. Because we share a common ancestor human and nonhuman primates are similar morphologically, physiologically, and even behaviorally. Primates are a diverse order. This diversity includes diet: some primates eat primarily leaves, while others rely on fruit, or insects, or even sap. Diversity in social organization: some primate taxa live in multimale groups, while others live in single male groups Diversity in activity patterns: some are active during the day (diurnal); others are active at night (nocturnal). Primates can be divided into two suborders: The strepsirhini (lemurs, lorises, and galagos) and the haplorhini (tarsiers, monkeys, apes, and humans) 1 Strepsirhini (Old world monkeys) Dental tooth comb (lower incisors can be used to groom) Moist rhinarium (wet nose (enhanced sense of smell)) Unfused mandibular and frontal symphases Tapetum lucidum (night vision) Postorbitol bar – ring of bone around the eye socket Two superfamilies: lemuroidea and lorisoidea Lemuroidea Lorisidae Galagos Found on the island of Found throughout Sub-Saharan Africa Madagascar and Comoro subSaharan Africa and Usually weigh >500g range in body mass Southeast Asia Nocturnal arboreal arboreal quadrupeds Lorises and galagos Solitary foragers Vertical clinging and Range in body mass Feed on animal prey & leaping is the primary (100g – 1.6kg) fruit form of locomotion Arboreal quadrupeds Rapid quadrupedal Eat fruits, leaves, flowers, Nocturnal & solitary running & leaping and insects foragers Many are nocturnal Varied diets (plants and Sleep together in tree insects) holes during the day Slow lorises have toxins Larger lemurs are usually (allergen) diurnal males leave group after sexual maturity Females are often more dominant than males 2 Haplorhini (new world and old world monkeys) Dry nose Retinal fovea (reduced night vision but better visual acuity) Postorbital closure Fused mandibular and fronal symphases (exception: tarsier) All have nails excepts for tarsier Single-chambered uterus One pair of nipples (exception tarsier) Three infraorders: tarsiiformes, platyrrhini, and catarrhini Tarsiiformes Platyrrhini Catarrhini One genus (tarsius) Central and South Africa, Asia, Southeast Southeast asia America Asia Small body size (80–130g) Dental formula Dental formula Relatively large eyes, with Flat noses & side facing Body mass 1kg-175kg fused lower leg bones nostrils Cercopithecidae, Entirely faunivorous New world/neotropic hylobatidae, and (insects, snakes, lizards) monkeys (central and hominidae nd Grooming crdw on 2 and south America) Cercopithecidae and 3 finger Body mass 110g-11.4kg hylobatidae have ischial Long legs compared to the Eat fruits, flowers, leaves, callosities (sitting pads) rest of the body and insects Variety of diets, social Rapid leaps Arboreal organizations, and Can turn their heads 180° Aotus – only nocturnal adaptations Eyes are immobile exception Bunodont molars Cebidae, atelidae Hylpbatidae and (prehensile tail), & hominidae lack tails and callitrichidae (tamarins, have larger brains and marmosets, and Goeldi, bigger body size they usually have twins, brightly coloured, one breeding female with many males and males help rear the infants) 3 Subgroups of catarrhini Cercopithecidae (Catarrhini) Long narrow nose & lose trunk Have tails Bilophodont teeth Cercopithecinae Colobinae Africa Africa and Asia Range in body mass (1kg-32kg) High cusps on their molar teeth Sexually dimorphic (males larger than Long tails and hindlimbs females) Short thumbs Eat ripe fruit which is stored in their No cheek pouches cheek pouches Range body mass (4.2-11.2kg) Arboreal quadrupeds Most are arboreal quadrupeds Variety of social groups Eat leaves – multi-chambered stomach (monogamous, multi-male, multi- Live in social troops (5-90 individuals) female) Hylobatids (catarrhini) Small bodied (4.4-11.1kg) Southeast asia Longer forearms relative to body size Brachiation (ability to swing from branch to branch) Gibbons: eat ripe fruit, leaves and invertebrates Hominidae (catarrhin
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