Skip to main content

The Behavioral Ecology of the Tibetan Macaque

  • Book
  • Open Access
  • © 2020

You have full access to this open access Book


  • The first comprehensive book on the social behavior, cooperation, culture, cognition, and group dynamics of the Tibetan macaque (Macaca thibetana)
  • Recommended reading for undergraduate and graduate students and researchers in the areas of anthropology, biology (zoology, animal behavior, ecology, conservation biology, wildlife management), cognitive psychology, social sciences and philosophy with an interest in issues connecting humans and nonhuman primates in behavior and society
  • An open access book, featuring contributions by leading researchers in the field of primatology

Part of the book series: Fascinating Life Sciences (FLS)

Buy print copy

Softcover Book USD 54.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info
Hardcover Book USD 59.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Table of contents (15 chapters)

  1. Introduction

  2. Social Behavior and Dynamics in Tibetan Macaques

  3. Living with Microbes, Parasites, and Diseases

  4. Emerging Technologies in Primatology


About this book

This open access book summarizes the multi-disciplinary results of one of China’s main primatological research projects on the endemic Tibetan macaque (Macaca thibetana), which had continued for over 30 years, but which had never been reported on systematically. Dedicated to this exceptional Old World monkey, this book makes the work of Chinese primatologists on the social behavior, cooperation, culture, cognition, group dynamics, and emerging technologies in primate research accessible to the international scientific community.

One of the most impressive Asian monkeys, and the largest member of its genus, the Tibetan macaque deserves to be better known. This volume goes a long way towards bringing this species into the spotlight with many excellent behavioral analyses from the field. - Frans de Waal, Professor of Psychology, Emory University, USA.

Macaques matter. To understand primate patterns and trends, and to gain important insight into humanity, we need to augment and expand our engagement with the most successful and widespread primate genus aside from Homo. This volume focuses on the Tibetan macaque, a fascinating species with much to tell us about social behavior, physiology, complexity and the macaque knack for interfacing with humans. This book is doubly important for primatology in that beyond containing core information on this macaque species, it also reflects an effective integrated collaboration between Chinese scholars and a range of international colleagues—exactly the type of collaborative engagement primatology needs. This volume is a critical contribution to a global primatology. - Agustín Fuentes, Professor of Anthropology, University of Notre Dame, USA.

I have many fond memories of my association with Mt. Huangshan research beginning in 1983, when together with Professor Qishan Wang we established this site. It is such a beautiful place and Imiss it. It is gratifying to see how far research has progressed since we began work there, becoming more internationalized and very much a collaborative endeavor under the long-term direction of Professor Jin-Hua Li and colleagues. This book highlights the increased interest in this species, representing a variety of disciplines ranging from macro aspects of behavior, cognition and sociality, to micro aspects of microbes, parasites and disease, authored by a group of renowned Chinese and international primatologists. I applaud their efforts and expect more interesting work to come from this site in the years ahead. - Kazuo Wada, Professor Emeritus, Kyoto University, Japan.

Editors and Affiliations

  • School of Resources and Environmental Engineering, Anhui University, Hefei, China

    Jin-Hua Li

  • Department of Biological Sciences, Primate Behavior and Ecology Program, Central Washington University, Ellensburg, USA

    Lixing Sun

  • Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology Unit, German Primate Center, Leibniz Institute for Primate Research, Göttingen, Germany

    Peter M. Kappeler

About the editors

Prof. Jin-Hua Li (Ph.D., Peking University - Department of Psychology, 1998) is a Vice-President and Professor of Hefei Normal University and Professor and Head & PI of Primate Research Group of Anhui University. For over three decades, he has dedicated to primate research (with special interest in behavioral ecology and social evolution) and conducted field studies on the Tibetan macaque for 33 continuous years in Huangshan, China since 1986. With more than 80 original research articles, he also authored two academic books, one of which is The Tibetan Macaque Society: A Field Study, which is well read in especially China and Japan. His research accomplishments have led to invitations from several universities in the US and Japan (including University of Washington, Central Washington University, Emory University, and Kyoto University). He has also served the editorial boards of several academic journals including Current Zoology and Journal of Mammalogy (Acta Theriologica Sinica). 

Prof. Lixing Sun (Ph.D., State University of New York - College of Environmental Science and Forestry, 1996) is a behavioral ecologist and evolutionary biologist who has worked on a variety of species including deer, rodents, pandas, birds, and amphibians before focusing on primates in 2004. His current research lies in primate social structure, social networks, and social cognition with a long-term goal of a better understanding of human nature and human societies from an evolutionary perspective. He has authored/co-authored more than 60 original research papers nine book chapters, and four books including the acclaimed Beaver: -Life History of a Wetland Engineer (Cornell University Press, 2004) and The Fairness Instinct (Prometheus Books, 2013). He also served as Associate Editor for Current Zoology and is an editorial board member of several academic journals.

Prof. Peter Kappeler (Ph.D., Duke University, 1992) holds a chair for Sociobiology/Anthropology at the University of Göttingen and is the head of the Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology Unit at the German Primate Center. He studied Biology and Psychology at the University of Tübingen and at Duke University. As a postdoc, he worked at the German Primate Center and obtained his Habilitation in Tropical Ecology from the University of Würzburg. Before moving to his present position, he was the head of the Behavioral Ecology Department at Leipzig University. His research interests focus on the social systems of non-human primates. For the past 25 years, his empirical work has focused on the social and mating systems of Malagasy primates, carnivores and birds, which he and his students have been studying at Kirindy Forest. He has authored more than 200 peer-reviewed papers in top scientific journals, and authored or edited 15 books and special issues, including The Lemurs of Madagascar and a (German) textbook on animal behavior. He is a long-term editor of the journal Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology.

Bibliographic Information

Publish with us