The study of social dynamics in juvenile vervet monkeys

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Vilette, Chloé Irma
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Arts and Science
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Lethbridge, Alta. : Dept. of Psychology
Using a longitudinal approach, I sought to deepen my understanding on social integration in wild juvenile vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus). First, I focused on the analytical tools used to capture the social and temporal dynamics within my data, which led me to provide my own flexible and reliable methods. Second, I used these methods to address theoretical questions regarding the development of social networks as well as the emergence of sex-specific social behaviours in male and female juveniles, throughout social development. Overall, my findings showed that juveniles develop social networks composed of few strong and many weak ties, through social niche construction. Taking a closer look at these strong ties, in turn, demonstrated that the value of sociality not only lies in the formation of a subset of strong ties, but also in the formation of a more extended social network, where the offspring’s mother grooming partners were found.
social dynamics , social development , social networks , juveniles , vervet monkeys , Cercopithecus aethiops--Infancy--Longitudinal studies , Cercopithecus aethiops--Behavior--Longitudinal studies , Cercopithecus aethiops--Development--Longitudinal studies , Cercopithecus aethiops--Social aspects--Longitudinal studies , Social behavior in animals--Research , Social networks , Animal societies , Animal behavior , Social sciences--Network analysis , Dissertations, Academic