Olfactory-Related Behaviors in Captive Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)
Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10,5 credits / 16 HE creditsStudent thesis
Primates have traditionally been considered having a poor sense of smell compared to other orders of mammals, like carnivores, due to reduced olfactory structures of the primate brain. This thought, however, is slowly changing. There are now a range of studies showing that primates do use their sense of smell, for example in chemical communication. However, few studies have been carried out on olfactory-related behaviors in Great Apes. The aim of this study was to assess the occurrence of olfactory-related behaviors in captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). The results do not only show that chimpanzees use their sense of smell, but also a behavioral difference between male and female chimpanzees. There was a significant difference between male to female smelling of the anogenitals and male to male smelling of the anogenitals (p = 0.0001) and also a difference between the occurrences of males and females touching an object with the hand and then smelling at the hand (p = 0. 0007). There was a significant difference between male and female frequency of smelling at an object (p = 0.001) and a significant difference between the occurrences of male and female smelling at foods and liquids (p = 0.003). There were no observations of chimpanzees performing a scent-marking behavior. These results suggest that chimpanzees use their sense of smell, from investigating new objects to the inspection of food and other chimpanzees. It would be interesting in future studies to study the difference between male and female frequency of olfactory-related behaviors.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 11 p.
Olfaction; Behavior; Chimpanzee; Gender difference
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-69247ISRN: LiTH-IFM-Ex-11/2512--SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-69247DiVA: diva2:424743
Subject / course
UppsokLife Earth Science
Laska, Matthias, Professor
Hargeby, Anders, Universitetslektor