Jakob Villioth

Domaines de recherche

Pan troglodytes - demographic and ecological causes and consequences

Among the wide array of social behaviors displayed by animals, undoubtedly one of the most important and well studied is aggression. The majority of research in this area has focused on rodents, birds and primates. While studies of birds and rodents have explored a diverse set of causes and consequences of aggressive interactions, studies in non-human primates, due to their groupliving nature, have investigated aggression and the process of conflict resolution mostly with regard to social dominance.

For my PhD project I will use a unique comparative approach to test multiple theoretical predictions for the use of aggression in dyadic conflicts and thereby gain a deeper understanding of the origins of aggression in chimpanzees.
The study will investigate how demographic variation over time and across communities influences the patterning of aggressive interactions as well as how differences in ecology affect the occurrence of aggressive interactions in several chimpanzee communities.

I will collect comparable data from the Sonso and Waibira communities, and additionally make use of comprehensive data from the Sonso community collected by Dr Newton-Fisher in 2004/05. This will provide three comparable data sets, allowing within and between community analyses. The study will further include data from the Kanyawara chimpanzee community (Uganda), and the bonobo community at LuiKotale (DRC).

The project is supervised by Dr Newton-Fisher (University of Kent) and Prof. Klaus Zuberbühler (UniNE).

Jakob Villioth