One of my favorite quotes by Frans was “although I feel that after all these years I know the group intimately, and am seldom wrong about the events that take place in it, I cannot be absolutely sure. To study animal behavior is to interpret, but with constant gnawing feeling that the interpretation my not be the right one.”
In the book, it does mention that wild chimpanzees do spend more than half our their waking time foraging for food. Because their food is provided for them, there is a lot more down time at the zoo, which leads to an intensified social life. Would the hierarchy differ much more in the wild????
Ranks are formalized. When they become unclear, a dominance struggle ensues
Mama enjoys enormous respect in the community. Her influence on the group might be due to age, or her gender. Females bring stability to the less controlled male population, who always have a need for power.
Ok, no more silliness, how do chimpanzees communicate? Though daily grunts, greetings. Everyone grunts a hello to the head alpha male. The zookeepers can predict when a takeover or Bid for power will occur by the lack of respect that shows by not greeting another male. This can take weeks to occur….but think about how we feel when someone sits in our chair in class, or when we walk by an office door and the soor is shut as we walk by….maybe a one time occurrence, but what if it happens daily??? WE know that something is up
Yeroen and Luit were zoomates at another Zoo before coming to Anherm, where they joined with Nikkie to become the three males of the colony. Luit stopped greeting Yereon, and soon Nikkie followed Liut’s lead of active dissidence. The Ladies all were fans of Yeroen, so the process of winning over all the ladies took some time as well. The ladies were divided and conquered by multiple tactical maneuvers. Nikkie would play the Jerk to the ladies by chasing them around, while Luit and Yeroen would have little squimishes. Luit was the stronger of the two, and with the ladies gone, Yeroen would not have the protection that he needed. Soon, the powerplay went inot affect, and eventually Yeroen was “greeting” Luit. This would have seemed to be the end of the story, but eventually Nikkie teamed up with his enemy Yeroen, and the two of them overthrew Luit. Luit went from alpha, to lowly third in command. By the time the study ended, Nikkie was very much in charge, with a second in command that had a loyal following. So how does this theory work in the business world….don’t we build alliances, don’t we divide into groups or cliques, and don’t we plan our coups, or as in Yeroen’s case, maybe just our survival??
Chimpanzees are intelligent manipulators. Their ability is clear enough in their use of tools , but it is even more pronounced in their use of others as social instruments.
This book highlights many of the takeovers, or as the author describes the as Bids for Power during the six year study. And as newer studies are showing, chimpnazees are using a lot more than their strength to get top position of power. And in one of the takeovers that was detailed in the book, the second in charge was just as happy in his position, rather than be third guy. Very interesting reading.
This has to do with sex…which as we all know does not belong in the office place. A high ranking male copulates more often than subordinates…this makes the evolution of male ambition understandable, provided that mating success results in reproductive success.
422 chimpanzee politics
Frans de WaalIn 1975, de Waalbegan a six-yearproject on theworlds largestcaptive colony ofchimpanzees at theArnhem Zoo inHolland
Yeroen, Luit, Nikkie, Dandy 4 males MamaAmber,,Gorilla,Franje,Fons Roosje,Moniek Sub Group Mama Tepel, Tarzan, Woute Jimmie&Jakie,Jonas,Krom,Spin r, Puist Sub group Jimmie Sub group Tepel Zwart,Oor,Henny Future players Three Girls
According to Science Daily (Feb. 3, 2009)— With most mammals, the biggest and most aggressive male claims the alpha male role and gets his choice of food and females. But a new study from the University of Minnesota suggests that at least among chimpanzees, smaller, more mild-mannered males can also use political behavior top position to secure the .