, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 117–136

Relationship of sexual dimorphism in canine size and body size to social, behavioral, and ecological correlates in anthropoid primates

  • Walter Leutenegger
  • James T. Kelly

DOI: 10.1007/BF02382954

Cite this article as:
Leutenegger, W. & Kelly, J.T. Primates (1977) 18: 117. doi:10.1007/BF02382954


Among anthropoid primates there are interspecific differences in the degree of sexual dimorphism in both body size and canine size. Within the suborder body size dimorphism and canine size dimorphism are positively correlated,r=0.76. This correlation suggests that the two dimorphisms are equally developed in some species, while in other species there is a differential degree of sexual dimorphism.

An analysis of these results and their relation to social organization and other ecological variables reveals: (1) the degree of canine size dimorphism is closely related to the amount of male intrasexual selection in a given mating system; and (2) the degree of body size dimorphism is also related to male intrasexual selection, but may be modified (either enhanced or diminished) by selection pressure from factors such as habitat, diet, foraging behavior, antipredator behavior, locomotory behavior, and female preference.

Copyright information

© Japan Monkey Centre 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Walter Leutenegger
    • 1
  • James T. Kelly
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA