Original Article


, Volume 46, Issue 3, pp 191-197

First online:

Affiliative relations among male Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata yakui) within and outside a troop on Yakushima Island

  • Shiro HoriuchiAffiliated withLaboratory of Human Evolution Studies, Kyoto UniversityDivision of Behavioral Science, Faculty of Arts and Letters, Tohoku University Email author 

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Male Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata yakui) in a troop on Yakushima Island frequently groom other males. However, previous studies have not compared the social relations of troop males to those of non-troop males. I followed all troop males and non-troop males in and near a troop during a mating season and during the following non-mating season and recorded their neighbors, grooming, and agonistic interactions. Comparisons of the social relations of troop males and non-troop males with other troop members revealed that grooming and agonistic interactions with females during the mating season were similar between troop and non-troop males. However, troop males groomed each other more often and had fewer agonistic interactions among themselves than did non-troop males. Compared to what occurred in the mating season, troop males groomed females less often and exchanged grooming bouts more often with other troop males during the non-mating season. One non-troop male groomed females more frequently than did any troop male in both seasons, and this male groomed troop males more frequently than did any troop male in the non-mating season. This male immigrated into the troop during the following mating season. Regardless of their competition with respect to reproduction, male Japanese macaques on Yakushima Island maintain affiliative relations, probably to cooperatively defend fertile females from non-troop males.


Affiliative relation Japanese macaques Yakushima Troop male Non-troop male