Chest-rubbing in captive woolly monkeys (Lagothrix lagotricha)
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The correlates of chest-rubbing were studied in a captive group of woolly monkeys (Lagothrix lagotricha) to assess possible functions of territorial marking, spacing among competing groups or competing males, reproductive communication, marking to identify familiar environments, selfanointing, and displacement activity. Chest-rubbing was observed only in sexually mature monkeys and was a predominantly male activity. Females increased chest-rubbing when the original adult male died. Chest-rubbing by the first adult male was more common during the two months that he was mating with two females and at times when keepers were likely to be at the exhibit. The results suggest a reproductive function for chest-rubbing in both males and females. There is also support for chest-rubbing as a spacing activity.
Key wordsWoolly monkeys Lagothrix lagotricha Chest-rubbing Marking behavior Reproductive behavior
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