Abstract # 177:

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


AN ACTIVE, CONFIDENT TEMPERAMENT DURING INFANCY PREDICTS LATER INTEREST IN AN UNFAMILIAR HUMAN OBSERVER IN RHESUS MACAQUES (MACACA MULATTA)

T. A. Weinstein and J. P. Capitanio
California National Primate Research Center, University of California, Davis, One Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616, USA
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We investigated consistency in behavioral responsiveness between infancy and adolescence/early adulthood by assessing the willingness to approach an unfamiliar human. Subjects were 222 rhesus macaques (mean age = 3.93 years) living in five 0.19-hectare corrals at the California National Primate Research Center. The human approached each corral on three occasions, standing 0.76 meters from the chain link fence for three minutes. We recorded identities of individuals that approached within arm’s reach of the fence and categorized them as having approached on zero, one, two, or three occasions. All animals had participated in a 25-hour BioBehavioral Assessment (BBA) at 3-4 months of age. We conducted a MANOVA with eight BBA-derived responsiveness and temperament scores as dependent variables, and included sex and number of approaches as independent variables. Multivariate tests revealed a significant interaction between sex and number of approaches, Wilks’ lambda = 0.840, F(24, 601) = 1.554, p < 0.05, with males who showed more activity during the infant BBA approaching the observer the most frequently. Also, regardless of sex, a significant main effect revealed that animals who were more active and rated as more confident in infancy showed the greatest number of approaches (all p < 0.05). This suggests that bold, curious infants who engage in more locomotion and environmental exploration during infancy continue to behave in a bold and curious manner 1-9 years later.