UNLV’S Department of Anthropology Presents: "Cooperation Among Lemurs: Pair-Living, Pair-Bonding, and Infant Care," a talk by Dr. Stacey Tecot, assistant professor of anthropology, University of Arizona
Rarely does a person raise offspring on his or her own, without any help from others. It has been proposed that allo-maternal care has been profoundly important during early human evolution, conferring significant energetic benefits to young and their mothers, enabling higher fertility and less costly brain growth, and eventually more emotionally modern brains. Yet, this behavior is extremely rare among mammals, and we have little understanding of how such an important behavior evolved in even our closest relatives. In this lecture, Dr. Tecot will explore the variation present in lemur social, mating, and rearing systems, with a focus on the red-bellied lemur.
Dr. Tecot will then address four general questions to understand what selected for the evolution of allo-maternal care in primates, and led to the extensive systems we see in humans:
- What is allo-maternal care?
- How is it distributed across primates?
- What are itsultimate benefits?
- What mechanisms facilitate it?