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Bringing Up a Young Monkey (Erythrocebus Patas)

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1. A young patas monkey was reared by the author from extreme youth (two weeks old at the most). A great deal of attention was given to its upbringing and great efforts were made to emulate the care which, one judged, it would have received from its mother. 2. HARLOW'S stages of reflex, clinging for security, and final detachment through exploration were clearly recognised although the reflex stage seemed less pronounced than in the rhesus monkeys. 3. The importance of clinging to a soft object was confirmed. 4. The mouth region, lower face, chin, ventral neck and chest seem to be the most important contact points, besides the palms of the hands and feet. 5. Contrary to HARLOW'S experiments the observations seem to show that sucking something soft is of the greatest importance to the animal's comfort and feeling of security. 6. Observations were made on the animal's diet and on what it put into its mouth, thereby gradually learning what was eatable. 7. Many observations were made on the monkey's play, its relationship to other animals and its interest in dolls, films and pictures. 8. Various emotional expressions are described. Laughter is traced back to the play-bite and the kiss to the sucking and playing with the mother's teat similar to the origin of the human kiss. 9. Methods of training are discussed taking the animal's particular social and possessive behaviour into consideration. The conclusion is that punishment usually has an effect opposite to that desired. 10. A comparison was made with a small red-tailed monkey brought up with a HARLOW'S mother-substitute. It is suggested that various differences in the behaviour of the two neo-natal monkeys is connected with differences in social behaviour such as troop organisation. 11. It is suggested that when the mother-child relationship of humans is compared with that of other primates more consideration should be taken of the "nesting" behaviour of humans.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Zoology, the University of Ibadan. Formerly of Makerere College, Kampala

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