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Reproductive tradeoffs for male baboons: competing versus caring

Joan Silk, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University
Wednesday, September 22, 2021
12:00-1:15 PM
1010 Weiser Hall Map
The Evolution and Human Adaptation Program (EHAP) at the University of Michigan is proud to present our fall 2021 speaker series:

In virtually all human societies, men and women form stable pair bonds, male reproductive skew is low, children receive considerable care and resources from both of their parents, and nuclear families are part of a set progressively larger social units that commonly include kin, affines, and unrelated members of the same ethnic group. Understanding of the evolution of this suite of traits is problematic because the most recent common ancestor of humans and the genus Pan probably did not share any of these features. However, a growing body of data from studies of living primates suggest that there may be multiple pathways to the evolution of male paternal care and extended breeding bonds, and provide a broader foundation for thinking about the evolution of human reproductive strategies. My research group has been exploring the trade-offs between mating and parenting effort for male olive baboons, a species with relatively high male reproductive skew and a polygynadrous mating system. Our data provide evidence of behavioural trade-offs between mating effort and parenting effort in wild primates, changes in allocation of mating and parenting effort across the life course, and the existence of enduring reproductive bonds. I will describe these data and their implications for understanding the evolution of the unusual set of traits that characterize our own species.
Building: Weiser Hall
Event Type: Presentation
Tags: Talk
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Department of Psychology, Department of Anthropology, Evolution & Human Adaptations Program (EHAP)