Primates

, Volume 35, Issue 3, pp 283–300

Adolescent exaggeration in female catarrhine primates

Authors

  • Connie M. Anderson
    • Department of AnthropologyHartwick College
  • Craig F. Bielert
    • Department of PsychologyState University of New York
Article

DOI: 10.1007/BF02382726

Cite this article as:
Anderson, C.M. & Bielert, C.F. Primates (1994) 35: 283. doi:10.1007/BF02382726

Abstract

Adolescent females of 11 primate species display exaggerated versions of the cues to sexual cycle state or fertility which are displayed by adult females: anubis baboons; geladas; Assamese, Barbary, crab-eating, Japanese, and stump-tailed macaques; patas monkeys; gorillas; and humans. These cases are briefly described and a variety of hypotheses is presented and evaluated to account for the adolescent exaggeration. Such exaggeration may be a super-normal sexual stimulus, a barrier to cross-species hybridization, a helpful prop in female:female competition, a passport for transfers, an insurance policy where unpredictable changes of circumstance are likely, or a non-adaptive side-effect of some other phenomenon. The transfer and unpredictability hypotheses seem to apply to the largest number of species, including humans.

Key Words

AdolescentesSexual displays

Copyright information

© Japan Monkey Centre 1994