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Food Sharing across Borders
Evolutionary models consider hunting and food sharing to be milestones that paved the way from primate to human societies. Because fossil evidence is scarce, hominoid primates serve as referential models to assess our common ancestors' capacity in terms of communal use of resources, food sharing, and other forms of cooperation. Whereas chimpanzees form male-male bonds exhibiting resource-defense polygyny with intolerance and aggression toward nonresidents, bonobos form male-female and female-female bonds resulting in relaxed relations with neighboring groups. Here we report the first known case of meat sharing between members of two bonobo communities, revealing a new dimension of social tolerance in this species. This observation testifies to the behavioral plasticity that exists in the two Pan species and contributes to scenarios concerning the traits of the last common ancestor of Pan and Homo. It also contributes to the discussion of physiological triggers of in-group/out-group behavior and allows reconsideration of the emergence of social norms in prehuman societies.
Journal: HUMAN NATURE-AN INTERDISCIPLINARY BIOSOCIAL PERSPECTIVE
Number of pages: 13
Keywords:Food sharing, Intercommunity encounters, Bonobo, Pan paniscus, Human evolution