Abstract # 12:

Scheduled for Thursday, August 18, 2005 09:45 AM-10:00 AM: Session 2 (Mayfair Room) Oral Presentation

Personality Types in Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes): Another 'Big 5'

L. Murray
University College Chester, Dept. of Psychology, Parkgate Road, Chester, Cheshire CH1 4BJ, England
     In order to demonstrate that personality measurement and typing can be applied to chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), mean ratings on 25 adjectives from a rating scale adapted from Stevenson-Hinde & Zunz (1978) were analyzed by Principal Components Analysis. Scores on these components were calculated for 59 individual chimpanzees from three zoos in the UK. Examination of the magnitude and rank of these scores enabled identification of five distinct personality types. The 'Sociably Confident' and 'Sociably Timid' types included adult and immature individuals, while 'Excitably Confident' chimpanzees were all adults, and the 'Sociably Placid' type all immatures. Those of the 'Excitably Timid' type were almost exclusively adult females. Unique personality profiles could be identified, including those for two very different alpha males. The basic distinction between confidence and timidity approximates earlier descriptions of wild apes as 'bold' (or 'brash') versus 'shy', while all three major descriptors - confidence, sociability and excitability - resemble the two primary personality factors of Extraversion and Neuroticism found in humans. Not only do these five distinct personality types exist in chimpanzees, but specific behaviors associated with these types were also identified.