The Pair-Bond Formation and Its Role in the Stimulation of Reproductive Function in Female Common Marmosets (Callithrix jacchus)
Authors: Silva, Hélderes Peregrino A.; Sousa, M. B. C.
Source: International Journal of Primatology, Volume 18, Number 3, 199706 , pp. 387-400(14)
Abstract:The sociosexual relationship between male and female common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) is characterized by pair-bond formation, which includes sexual and social interactions such as contact, huddling and allogrooming. The formation of heterosexual pairs in captivity sometimes is unsuccessful in terms of reproduction. We investigated the existence of a correlation between characteristics of sociosexual interaction of marmoset pairs and its role in stimulating reproductive function in females. We studied pair-bond formation during the first 10 weeks of pairing in eight unrelated heterosexual pairs of common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) without prior sexual experience. In three of them, pregnancy occurred during the study period (group SR), and we compared the profile of their sociosexual interactions with that of the five other couples in which pregnancy was not registered (group NS) during that period. The results show differences between the two groups, related mainly to affiliative responses between male and female, with significantly higher levels of allogrooming and simultaneous piloerection in the SR group. Although we did not find significant differences in the frequency of mounting behavior between groups, their reproductive success was different, suggesting that some behavioral patterns related to cooperative interactions between the male and female could be expressing the pair-bond. These behaviors may be influencing the females' physiology and consequently successful reproduction in the species.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Setor de Psicobiologia, Departamento de Fisiologia, Centro de Biociências, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, 59072-970, Natal, RN, Brasil
Publication date: 1997-01-01