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Keywords:

  • bimanual coordination;
  • Cebus capucinus;
  • laterality;
  • New World monkeys;
  • task complexity

Abstract

This study examined hand preference in white-faced capuchins on a unimanual task and on a coordinated bimanual task. For the unimanual task, handedness was assessed by observing simple reaching for small grains. For the bimanual task, tubes lined with chocolate paste inside were presented to the capuchins. The hand and the finger(s) used to remove chocolate paste were recorded. Seven individuals out of eight in the reaching task and 12 out of 13 in the tube task exhibited a hand preference. Moreover, test–retest correlations showed stability in hand use across time for the coordinated bimanual task. We found no significant differences in strength of hand preference between sexes. Finally, as noted in other primate species, the capuchins were more lateralized in the bimanual task compared to the unimanual task. Am. J. Primatol. 69:1064–1069, 2007. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.