Use of a club by a wild white-faced capuchin (Cebus capucinus) to attack a venomous snake (Bothrops asper)


  • S. Boinski

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratory of Comparative Ethology, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland
    • NIH Animal Center, Bldg. 112, Poolesville, MD 20837
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In Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, an adult male Cebus capucinus was observed repeatedly hitting a venomous snake (Bothropsasper) with a branch. Initially a large dead branch overhanging the snake had been broken off in the course of aggressive displays to the snake by the adult and two subadult males. The snake's escape was apparently prevented by the weight of the fallen branch and possibly by the injuries caused by its fall. This is the first direct observation of a capuchin monkey in a natural habitat using a tool.