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Grooming Solicitation & Hierarchy
in Cercopithecus petaurista

By: Ryan Domitz | Mentor: Frank Logiudice

Abstract

Allogrooming is a behavioral adaptation present in many primate systems that serves to organize social hierarchies and promote social cohesion by placating future agonistic conspecifics. Lesser Spot-Nosed Guenons (Cercopithecus petaurista) are one species that exhibits allogrooming both in the wild and in captive populations. In a population of C. petaurista, dominant males perform proportionately less allogrooming than do females, possibly indicating dominant individuals are the recipients of higher rates of allogrooming than are subordinate ones. My case study catalogs the activity budgets of three captive Lesser Spot-Nosed monkeys and investigates the relationship between allogrooming, solicitation of allogrooming, and aggression. It also examines whether or not these activities can be quantified as metrics for measuring hierarchy. Consistent with the literature, I found no association between allogrooming and aggression. Instead my study supports a positive correlation between aggression and grooming solicitation as a metric of hierarchy

KEYWORDS: Primate; biology; behavior; grooming; cercopithecus; allogrooming; hierarchy

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