Group takeover by a natal male howling monkey (Alouatta palliata) and associated disappearance and injuries of immatures

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As part of a long-term study on howling monkey behavior and social dynamics, a known natal male was observed taking over his group from his putative sire. Due to the accidental death of one of the adult males, this natal male had matured in a one-male group and had never observed juvenile male emigration nor adult male immigration and associated behaviors. Nevertheless, the behaviors associated with the takeover were indistinguishable from those of an immigrant male, including disappearance of immatures, one of whom was found with extensive injuries. While it cannot be said that the natal male inherited these behaviors from his presumed father, it can be said that he exhibited species-typical behaviors associated with male takeover in the absence of observational learning. © 1994 Japan Monkey Centre.






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Clarke, MR, EL Zucker and KE Glander (1994). Group takeover by a natal male howling monkey (Alouatta palliata) and associated disappearance and injuries of immatures. Primates, 35(4). pp. 435–442. 10.1007/BF02381952 Retrieved from

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Kenneth Earl Glander

Professor Emeritus of Evolutionary Anthropology

Primate ecology and social organization: the interaction between feeding patterns and social structure; evolutionary development of optimal group size and composition; factors affecting short and long-term demographic changes in stable groups; primate use of regenerating forests.

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