Abstract # 3170 Poster # 194:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 18, 2011 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 23 (Salon G (Sixth Floor)) Poster Presentation


USE OF GESTURE SEQUENCES IN FREE-LIVING CHIMPANZEES (PAN TROGLODYTES SCHWEINFURTHII) IN GOMBE NATIONAL PARK, TANZANIA.

T. L. Campion, M. L. Jensvold and G. Larsen
Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute, Central Washington University, Ellensburg, WA 98926, USA
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Gesture sequences are reported in captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), captive and free-living gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), and are unreported in free-living chimpanzees. The current study examined limb and head gestures produced during play among chimpanzees (P. t. schweinfurthii) in Gombe National Park, Tanzania. Gestures can be of auditory, visual, or tactile modalities. Captive chimpanzees use gesture modalities that are appropriate to the attentional state of the partner. We hypothesized that free-living chimpanzees would follow the same pattern, using visual gestures more often toward attentive partners and tactile and auditory gestures more often toward inattentive partners. Coders viewed 854 minutes of videotape, coding the modality and attentional state of the partner for each gesture. Interboserver reliability ranged from 85-93%. There were 1409 sequences and 6564 gestures, 14% of which were visual, 1% was auditory, and 85% were tactile. We combined auditory and tactile gestures for subsequent analysis. Visual gestures appeared less often when partners were inattentive (Adjusted Pearson residual = 5.76, p < .05). Sequences ranged in length from 2-31 gestures. When partners were unresponsive to the first gesture in a sequence, 77% of the time initiators gestured again. This dropped to 22% when the partner responded to the first gesture. This study showed that, similarly to captive chimpanzees, free-living chimpanzees gesture in modalities appropriate to their partner’s attentional state.