, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 207–211 | Cite as

A within-group gang attack on a young adult male chimpanzee: Ostracism of an ill-mannered member?

  • Toshisada Nishida
  • Kazuhiko Hosaka
  • Miho Nakamura
  • Miya Hamai


During a long-term study of wild chimpanzees in Tanzania, an unusual gang attack on a young adult male by the alpha male and seven other members of the same unit group (community) was observed and videotaped. Before the gang attack, the victim had not pant-grunted to the alpha male or to other adult males except for the second-ranked male, but had often bullied adult females without apparent reason. The alpha male's violent behavior, therefore, might have been punishment of or revenge against the ill-mannered young chimpanzee. This is the first record of an adult male other than an ex-alpha male becoming the object of ostracism by wild chimpanzees, although the victimized male did manage to return to the group after more than three months, when an ex-alpha male succeeded in reestablishing his former position.

Key Words

Chimpanzee Mahale Mountains Gang attack Pant-grunt Ostracism 


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Copyright information

© Japan Monkey Centre 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Toshisada Nishida
    • 1
  • Kazuhiko Hosaka
    • 1
  • Miho Nakamura
    • 2
  • Miya Hamai
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Zoology, Faculty of ScienceKyoto UniversityKyotoJapan
  2. 2.ANC Productions, Inc.TokyoJapan
  3. 3.Japan Monkey CentreAichiJapan

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