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Chapter 7

Chapter 7 Notes

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ANT 301

1 Chapter 7: Primate Behavior Behavior- anything organisms do that involves action in response to internal or external stimuli; the response of an individual, group, or species to its environment. Such responses may or may not be deliberate and they aren’t necessarily the results of conscious decision making. Ecological- pertaining to the relationships between organisms and all aspects of their environment (temperature, predators, non-predators, vegetation, availability of food and water, types of food, disease organisms, parasites, etc.) Behavioral ecology- the study of the evolution of behavior, emphasizing the role of ecological factors as agents of natural selection; behaviors and behavioral patterns have been favored because they increase the reproductive fitness of individuals (they’re adaptive) in specific environmental contexts. Social structure- the composition, size, and sex ratio of a group of animals; the social structure of a species is, in part, the result of natural selection in a specific habitat, and it guides individual interactions and social relationships. Metabolism- the chemical processes within cells that break down nutrients and release energy for the body to use. (When nutrients are broken down into their component parts, such as amino acids, energy is released and made available for the cell to use). Matrilines- groups that consist of a female, her daughters, and their offspring; matrilineal groups are common in macaques. Life history traits- characteristics and developmental stages that influence reproductive rates; examples include: longevity, age at sexual maturity, and length of time between births. Dominance hierarchies- systems of social organization wherein individuals within a group are ranked relative to one another; higher-ranking animals have greater access to preferred food items and mating partners than lower-ranking individuals. Dominance hierarchies are sometimes called “pecking orders.” Communication- any act that conveys information, in the form of a message, to another individual; frequently, the result of communication is a change in the behavioral of the recipient. Communication isn’t always deliberate but may instead be the result of involuntary processes or a secondary consequence of an intentional action. Autonomic- pertaining to physiological responses not under voluntary control; an example in chimps would be the erection of body hair during excitement. Blushing is a human example. Both convey information regarding emotional states, but neither is deliberate, and communication isn’t intended. Grooming- picking through fur to remove dirt, parasites, and other materials that may be present; social grooming is common am
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