Anthropology 101 Chapter 7

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  1. What is Meant By 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.
  2. The Evolution of Behavior
    The underlying principles of behavioral evolution lie in the interactions  between a number of environmental and physiological variables.
  3. Ecological Perspective
    Pertains to relationships between organisms and all aspects of their environment (temperature, predators,  vegetation, availability of food and water, types of food, disease organisms, parasites, etc.).
  4. Behavioral Ecology
    Focuses on the relationship between behaviors, natural environment, and biological traits of the species.

    Based on the assumption that animals, plants, and microorganisms evolved together.

    Behaviors have evolved through the operation of natural selection, or

    Some behaviors are influenced by genes and are subject to natural selection the same way physical characteristics are.
  5. The Evolution of Behavior
    Behavior constitutes a phenotype

    Individuals whose behavioral phenotypes increase reproductive fitness pass on their genes at a faster rate.

    Genes do not code for specific behaviors, however (i.e. aggression, cooperation, etc.)

    Species vary in their limits and potentials for learning and behavioral flexibility, set by genetic factors.

    Natural selection acts on genetic factors shaped by ecological setting of past and present
  6. 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.
  7. Primate Social Structure
    Primates are among the most social of animals, and social behavior is one of the major topics in primate research.

    The subject is broad, including all aspects of behavior that occur in social settings
  8. Some Factors That Influence Social Structure
    Body Size

    Larger animals require fewer calories per unit of weight than smaller animals.

    Larger animals are better able to retain heat and their overall energy requirements are less than for smaller animals.
  9. 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.
  10. Some Factors That Influence Social Structure
    Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) and Diet

    Smaller animals generally have a higher BMR than larger ones.

    Consequently, smaller primates require an energy-rich diet high in protein, fats, and carbohydrates
  11. Factors in Social Structure
    Nutritional needs have evolved along with BMR and body size

    Benefits are considered in terms of energy (calories) obtained from food versus costs (energy expended) of obtaining and digesting them.
  12. Some Factors That Influence Social Structure
    "Distribution of Resources"
    Leaves are abundant, dense, and support large groups of animals.

    Insects are widely scattered, causing animals to feed on them alone or in small groups of two or three

    Fruits and nuts occur in clumps and are most efficiently exploited by smaller groups of animals; large groups break up into smaller subunits to feed.
  13. Primate Social Groupings
    Species that rely on foods distributed in clumps tend to be protective of resources, especially if the feeding area is small enough to be defended.

    • These subunits may consist of one-male, multi-female groups (example: baboons) or matrilines (example: macaques)
    • that consist of a female, her daughters, and their offspring

    One-male units, able to join with others because food is plentiful, form large, stable communities (examples: howlers and baboons)
  14. Some Factors That Influence Social Structure

    Primates are vulnerable to many predators, including snakes, birds of prey, leopards, wild dogs, lions, and even other primates.

    Where predation pressure is high, large communities are advantageous.

    These may be multi-male, multi-female groups or congregations of one-male groups.

    When a baboon strays too far from its troop,  it is more likely to fall prey to predators.

    Leopards are the most serious nonhuman threat to terrestrial primates.
  15. Factors That Influence Social Structure
    "Relationships with Nonpredatory Species"
    Relationships with Nonpredatory Species: Many primate species associate with other primate and nonprimate species for various reasons, including predator avoidance.

    • Dispersal: Members of one sex leave the group in which they were born when they become sexually mature.
    • Individuals who leave find mates outside their natal group, so dispersal is believed to decrease the likelihood of close inbreeding.
  16. Life Histories That Influence Social Structure
    Characteristics or developmental stages that typify members of a species and influence reproductive rates.

    Examples: length of gestation, time between pregnancies, period of infant dependency and age at weaning, age of sexual maturity, and life expectancy.

    Unpredictable environments favor shorter life histories and stable ones, longer lives

    Today, the slow rate of reproduction increases the threat of extinction for all  the great apes
  17. Primate Activity Patterns
    Most primates are diurnal (of or during the day), but several small-bodied promisians and the owl monkey are nocturnal

    Nocturnal primates tend to forage for food alone or in groups of 2 or 3, and use concealment to avoid predators
  18. Human Activities Effect on Primates
    Virtually all nonhuman primate populations are impacted by human hunting and forest clearing.

    These activities disrupt and isolate groups, reduce numbers, reduce resource availability, and eventually can cause extinction.
  19. Why Be Social?
    Group living exposes animals to competition with other group members, so why  not live alone?

    Costs of competition are offset by the benefits of predator defense provided by associating with others.

    Group living evolved as an adaptive response to a number of ecological variables.
  20. Primate Social Behavior: Dominance
    • Many primate societies are organized into dominance hierarchies that impose order and
    • establish parameters of individual behavior. 

    Higher-ranking animals have greater access to preferred food items and mating partners than lower ranking individuals.

    Dominance hierarchies are sometimes called “pecking orders” that change throughout one’s life and are learned
  21. Factors that Influence Dominance Status



    ¤Time in the group



    ¤Mother’s social position
  22. Primate Social Behavior: Communication
    Any act that conveys information to another individual.

    Frequently, the result of communication is a change in the behavior of the recipient.

    Communication may be the result of involuntary processes or a secondary consequence of an intentional action.

    Raised body hair is an example of an autonomic, or unintentional, response.

    Gestures, facial expressions, and vocalizations are examples of deliberate communication.

    The fear grin, seen in all primates, indicates fear and submission.

    Grooming serves to indicate submission or reassurance.

    Displays communicate emotional states.
  23. Primate Social Behavior: 
    Aggressive Interactions
    Lead to group disruption, as opposed to affiliative behavior, which promote group cohesion.

    Conflict within a group frequently develops out of competition for resources, including mating partners and food items.

    Most intragroup aggression occurs in the form of various signals and displays within the context of a dominance hierarchy.

    Most tense situations are resolved through various submissive and appeasement behaviors.
  24. Intergroup Aggression
    Primate groups are associated with a home range where they remain permanently.

    Within the home range is a portion called the core area, which contains the highest concentration of predictable resources, and it’s where the group is most frequently found.

    The core area can also be said to be a group’s territory, and it’s the portion of the home range defended against intrusion.
  25. Primate Social Behavior: Affiliation and Altruism
    Common affiliative behaviors include reconciliation, consolation, and interactions between friends and relatives.

    Hugging, kissing and grooming are used in reconciliation.

    Relationships are crucial to nonhuman primates and the bonds between individuals can last a lifetime.

    Altruism, behaviors that benefit another while posing risk to oneself, are common in primate species.
  26. Reproduction and Reproductive Behaviors
    In most primate societies, sexual behavior is tied to the female’s reproductive cycle--estrus.

    Permanent bonding between females and males is not common among nonhuman primates.

    Male and female Bonobos may mate even when the female is not in estrus, a behavior that is not typical of chimpanzees.
  27. Sexual Selection
    A type of natural selection that operates on one sex, usually males.

    Long-term, this increases the frequency of traits that lead to greater success in acquiring mates.

    Sexual selection in primates is most common in species in which mating is polygynous and male competition for females is prominent.

    Sexual selection produces dimorphism with regard to a number of traits, most noticeably body size.
  28. Infanticide: A Reproductive Strategy?
    One way males increase their chances of reproducing is by killing infants fathered by other males.

    Individuals maximize their reproductive success, no matter the effect on population or species.

    When an infant dies, its mother resumes cycling and becomes sexually receptive.

    An infanticidal male avoids waiting two to three years for the infants to be weaned before he can mate with their mothers.
  29. Testing Hypotheses: Does Infanticide Provide Selective Advantage?
    Infanticidal males don’t kill their own offspring.

    Once a male has killed an infant, he subsequently fathers another infant with the victim’s mother.

    What data would support the hypotheses?
  30. Primate Cultural Behavior
    Cultural behavior is learned; it is passed from generation to generation through observation and instruction.

    Nonhuman primate infants, through observing their mothers and others, learn about food items, appropriate behaviors, and how to use and modify objects to achieve certain ends.

    More complex, chimpanzee culture includes tools such as termite fishing sticks and leaf sponges.
  31. Anthropocentric
    Viewing nonhuman animals in terms of human motives, and experience and capabilities; emphasizing the importance of humans over everything else
  32. The Biological Continuum
    Human brains are larger than primate brains, but the neurological processes are functionally the same.

    The necessity of close  bonding with at least one parent

    Need for physical contact

    Developmental stages and dependence on learning

    Capacity for cruelty, aggression, compassion, altruism, with humans more adept at cruelty and compassion and capability to reflect on behavior
  33. 1.Dominance hierarchies

    a)guarantee that dominant males are more reproductively successful.

    b)result in dominant individuals having priority access to food.

    c)don't guarantee a reproductive advantage in dominant males are permanent
    Answer: b 

    Dominance hierarchies result in dominan tindividuals having priority access to food.
  34. 2. Affiliative behaviors

    a)arise when there is competition for resources.

    b)enhance group cohesiveness.

    c)are rare among primates.

    d)may include displays.
    Answer: b

    Affiliative behaviors enhance group cohesiveness.
  35. 3.Vervet monkey communication

    a) is used to support the theory that primate vocalizations do not include external events or objects.

    b) is limited to scent marking and an occasional bark.

    c) includes specific sounds for different categories of predators (air, tree or ground).

    d) is sophisticated with regard to food.
    c) includes specific sounds for different categories of predators (air, tree or ground).
  36. 4.In a group’s territory there is usually a  
    _________________   area where the highest concentration of resources can be found.
    Answer: core

    In a group’s territory there is usually a core area where the highest concentration of resources can be found.
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Anthropology 101 Chapter 7
Anthropology 101 Chapter 7 Notes
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