Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Should I stay or should I go? Initiation of joint travel in mother–infant dyads of two chimpanzee communities in the wild


Fröhlich, Marlen; Wittig, Roman M; Pika, Simone (2016). Should I stay or should I go? Initiation of joint travel in mother–infant dyads of two chimpanzee communities in the wild. Animal Cognition, 19(3):483-500.

Abstract

It is well established that great apes communicate via intentionally produced, elaborate and flexible gestural means. Yet relatively little is known about the most fundamental steps into this communicative endeavour—communicative exchanges of mother–infant dyads and gestural acquisition; perhaps because the majority of studies concerned captive groups and single communities in the wild only. Here, we report the first systematic, quantitative comparison of communicative interactions of mother–infant dyads in two communities of wild chimpanzees by focusing on a single communicative function: initiation of carries for joint travel. Over 156 days of observation, we recorded 442 actions, 599 cases of intentional gesture production, 51 multi-modal combinations and 80 vocalisations in the Kanyawara community, Kibale National Park, Uganda, and the Taï South community, Taï National Park, Côte d’Ivoire. Our results showed that (1) mothers and infants differed concerning the signal frequency and modality employed to initiate joint travel, (2) concordance rates of mothers’ gestural production were relatively low within but also between communities, (3) infant communicative development is characterised by a shift from mainly vocal to gestural means, and (4) chimpanzee mothers adjusted their signals to the communicative level of their infants. Since neither genetic channelling nor ontogenetic ritualization explains our results satisfactorily, we propose a revised theory of gestural acquisition, social negotiation, in which gestures are the output of social shaping, shared understanding and mutual construction in real time by both interactants.

Abstract

It is well established that great apes communicate via intentionally produced, elaborate and flexible gestural means. Yet relatively little is known about the most fundamental steps into this communicative endeavour—communicative exchanges of mother–infant dyads and gestural acquisition; perhaps because the majority of studies concerned captive groups and single communities in the wild only. Here, we report the first systematic, quantitative comparison of communicative interactions of mother–infant dyads in two communities of wild chimpanzees by focusing on a single communicative function: initiation of carries for joint travel. Over 156 days of observation, we recorded 442 actions, 599 cases of intentional gesture production, 51 multi-modal combinations and 80 vocalisations in the Kanyawara community, Kibale National Park, Uganda, and the Taï South community, Taï National Park, Côte d’Ivoire. Our results showed that (1) mothers and infants differed concerning the signal frequency and modality employed to initiate joint travel, (2) concordance rates of mothers’ gestural production were relatively low within but also between communities, (3) infant communicative development is characterised by a shift from mainly vocal to gestural means, and (4) chimpanzee mothers adjusted their signals to the communicative level of their infants. Since neither genetic channelling nor ontogenetic ritualization explains our results satisfactorily, we propose a revised theory of gestural acquisition, social negotiation, in which gestures are the output of social shaping, shared understanding and mutual construction in real time by both interactants.

Statistics

Citations

Dimensions.ai Metrics
19 citations in Web of Science®
23 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

5 downloads since deposited on 30 Jan 2019
5 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Anthropology
Dewey Decimal Classification:300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
Language:English
Date:2016
Deposited On:30 Jan 2019 17:16
Last Modified:17 Sep 2019 19:53
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1435-9448
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10071-015-0948-z

Download

Download PDF  'Should I stay or should I go? Initiation of joint travel in mother–infant dyads of two chimpanzee communities in the wild'.
Preview
Content: Published Version
Filetype: PDF
Size: 811kB
View at publisher
Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)