An ‘indirect reputation’ experiment in four great ape species

Conference item


Russell, Y., Call, J. and Dunbar, R. 2005. An ‘indirect reputation’ experiment in four great ape species. 1st Congress of the European Federation for Primatology (EFP). Göttingen, Germany
TitleAn ‘indirect reputation’ experiment in four great ape species
AuthorsRussell, Y., Call, J. and Dunbar, R.
Abstract

Reputation is defined as knowledge of a person’s typical behaviour based on that person’s past behaviour. Indirect reputation refers to knowledge gained from observing events between third parties. This experiment was devised as a methodology for learning about indirect reputation in non-human apes (inspired by a recent body of human experiments). Four great ape species (Pan troglodytes verus, Pan paniscus, Gorilla gorilla gorilla, Pongo pygmaeus abelii) were tested on a simple paradigm where every subject passively observed two types of food sharing incident that occurred between human actors. One (1) was a nice person incident (a "nice" person gave some of her grapes to a human who begged for them). The other (2) was a nasty person incident (a "nasty" person refused to allow the beggar to take any grapes). After observing both incidents, the subject was allowed into a compartment where both nice and nasty persons were sitting side-by-side at plexiglas windows (with open food holes). Both humans were holding a container of grapes but neither fed the subject. This was a test of which human (nice/nasty) the subject prefers to approach. One measure of preference was the percentage of seconds that the subject spent at either window. Only chimpanzees (n = 17) spent significantly more seconds at the nice person’s window than the nasty person’s. The results were not significant for bonobos (n = 5), orangutans (n = 5), or gorillas (n = 5). One interpretation of these data is that chimpanzees were using the passively observed incident to guide their subsequent food seeking behaviour

LanguageEnglish
Conference1st Congress of the European Federation for Primatology (EFP)
Publication process dates
Deposited22 Oct 2015
Accepted11 Aug 2005
Output statusPublished
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https://repository.mdx.ac.uk/item/86037

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