Maternal aggression in lactating female Japanese macaques: time course and interindividual variation

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Abstract:

This study investigated the aggressive behavior of female Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata (Blyth, 1875)) during lactation. Following parturition, the frequency of aggression showed an initial decline during weeks 1–2 of infant life, then increased to peak during weeks 7–8 post partum, and finally declined again to prepartum levels. Neither the initial decline nor the subsequent increase in aggression rate post partum was related to sociodemographic characteristics of the mother–infant dyad or to measures of maternal style. These results suggest that variation in postpartum aggression may be influenced less by the quality of the mother–infant relationship than by the mother's relationships the mother has with group mates.

Notre travail étudie le comportement agressif de macaques japonais (Macaca fuscata (Blyth, 1875)) femelles durant l'allaitement. Après la mise bas, la fréquence des agressions décline au début pendant les semaines 1–2 de la vie des petits, pour augmenter et atteindre un sommet durant les semaines 7–8 après la naissance et pour enfin retourner aux niveaux bas d'avant la mise bas. Ni le déclin initial de l'agression après la mise bas, ni son accroisse ment subséquent ne sont reliés aux caractéristiques sociodémographiques de la dyade mère–petit et aux mesures du style maternel. Nos résultats indiquent que la variation de l'agression après la mise bas peut être influencée moins par la qualité de la relation mère–petit que par les relations entre la mère et ses compagnes au sein d'un même groupe.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2004

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  • Published since 1929, this monthly journal reports on primary research contributed by respected international scientists in the broad field of zoology, including behaviour, biochemistry and physiology, developmental biology, ecology, genetics, morphology and ultrastructure, parasitology and pathology, and systematics and evolution. It also invites experts to submit review articles on topics of current interest.
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