Skip to main content

Socially biased learning in the acquisition of a complex foraging task in juvenile cottontop tamarins, Saguinus oedipus

Humle, Tatyana, Snowdon, Charles T. (2008) Socially biased learning in the acquisition of a complex foraging task in juvenile cottontop tamarins, Saguinus oedipus. Animal Behaviour, 75 (1). pp. 267-277. ISSN 0003-3472. (doi:10.1016/j.anbehav.2007.05.021) (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:38036)

PDF (Restricted due to publisher policy) Publisher pdf
Language: English

Restricted to Repository staff only
Contact us about this Publication
[thumbnail of Restricted due to publisher policy]
Official URL


Our longitudinal study explored the role of socially biased learning in the acquisition of a novel foraging task that could be solved in two ways in captive juvenile cottontop tamarins. We trained parents to adopt a single solution (pole or ceiling strategy). We tested 13 different juvenile offspring-parent pairs on the task over the course of 11 weeks. Our objective was (1) to investigate the extent to which juveniles match their parent, and (2) to analyse the influence of behavioural feedback between parent and juvenile offspring on learning trajectories, behavioural acquisition and performance. Although not all juveniles matched the modelled solution, both groups of juveniles significantly spent more time at the targeted location being modelled for them. Parent and offspring correlated well in time spent at the demonstrated location. We investigated predictors of performance and success by analysing data prior to first success. Juveniles' exploration of the apparatus was important in dictating their success at the task, whereas observation of the parent had no influence. Both juvenile scrounging and adult food calling, which encouraged begging, drew the attention of the juveniles away from the task and impeded learning. High adult refusals per beg predicted task success in young. Adults monitored their offspring's performance and increased their refusals per begs upon the first success of their offspring. Cottontop tamarins also showed some behavioural scaffolding. Solving the task did not simply reflect a maturational change in juveniles, but was rather influenced by an intricate behavioural feedback between parent and offspring.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2007.05.021
Uncontrolled keywords: cottontop tamarin, food calling, foraging, individual difference, juvenile primate, Saguinus oedipus, scaffolding, scrounging, socially based learning, begging behavior, behavioral response, calling behavior, foraging behavior, juvenile, learning, parent-offspring interaction, primate, Primates, Saguinus imperator, Saguinus oedipus, Simiiformes
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation
Depositing User: Tatyana Humle
Date Deposited: 04 Apr 2014 14:32 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 12:51 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Humle, Tatyana:
  • Depositors only (login required):


Downloads per month over past year