Post-conflict Behaviour in Long-tailed Macaques (Macaca fascicularis)

II. Coping with the Uncertainty

Authors

  • Filippo Aureli,

    Corresponding author
    1. Ethology and Socio-ecology, University of Utrecht, and Biological Anthropology and Anatomy, Duke University, Durham
      Ethology and Socioecology, University of Utrecht, P.O. Box 80086, Nl.-3508 TB Utrecht.
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  • Carel P. van Schaik

    1. Ethology and Socio-ecology, University of Utrecht, and Biological Anthropology and Anatomy, Duke University, Durham
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Ethology and Socioecology, University of Utrecht, P.O. Box 80086, Nl.-3508 TB Utrecht.

Abstract

After being the victim of an agonistic conflict, long-tailed macaques increased the rate of tension-related activities such as scratching, body-shake and selfgrooming. This increase indicates that they experienced physiological changes preparing them to cope with the uncertainty of the post-conflict situation. Indeed, victims of agonistic conflict experienced a higher risk of renewed attacks. However, victims were also involved in social interactions characteristic of post-conflict situations, namely reconciliation and redirection. These two post-conflict social events reduced the rate of scratching, body-shake and selfgrooming. This suggests a faster termination of the stress response. Indeed, the two social events also decreased the likelihood of renewed attacks, one of the causes of the state of uncertainty. Reconciliation is more effective than redirection in this process probably because the restoration of the relationship with the former aggressor allows the victim to resume control of the situation.

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