Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Chase the Squirrel

I was listening to NPR's Wait Wait Don't Tell Me episode in the lab yesterday, and their Bluff the Listener game had a story that made me say "wow, I gotta find that one." The story itself was reported on Live Science and includes a video of Japanese macaques going after a flying squirrel. Basically, the study is about monkeys being annoyed by squirrels. Awesome. They start making threat calls, climb a tree, force the squirrel to glide to the ground, and then chase it once it gets there. The male macaques are thought to be impressing the females in their troop, being tough guys. "It is possible that adult or sub-adult male monkeys may be 'showing off' their fitness" as potential mates, said Kenji Onishi, an assistant professor of behavioral sciences at Osaka University and lead author of the paper being published in the current issue of the journal Primate Research.

Read the rest of the story and watch the video here:

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