HOPE Report No.32, 29th, Nov 2004.

The second HOPE workshop in Cogne, Italy "Tool use: chimpanzees and capuchins face to face"
A satellite meeting of IPS sponcered by HOPE (a core-to-core program of JSPS)
Organizers: Elisabetta Visalberghi, Dorothy Fragaszy and Tetsuro Matsuzawa

Date: 28-31 August 2004
Location: Cogne, Italy (Hotel Masion, 11012 Cogne)
Report by: Claudia Sousa

This workshop was held as a post-congress satellite meeting of IPS in Turin, Italy.The aim of the HOPE workshop is to exchange the information on the current topics of tool use in Pan and Cebus. The participants were only 14 but coming from different countries.There were 2 from Italy, 3 from USA, 3 from Japan, 3 from Brazil, 1 from Portugal, 1 from Netherlands, and 1 from France.The meeting consisted of 6 researchers concentrating on Pan and 8 researchers concentrating on Cebus.In a relaxed atmosphere in the Alps, this meeting provided a rare opportunity of face-to-face discussion.The participants enjoyed the talks, the discussion, and various films such as the nut-cracking behavior of the cebus in the wild.

A group photo of participants of the 2nd HOPE workshop in Cogne, Italy.

The participants were as follows:

Elisabetta Visalberghi Instituto di Scienze e Tecnologie della Cognizione, CNR, Rome, Italy

Jenny Glikman Instituto di Scienze e Tecnologie della Cognizione, CNR, Rome, Italy

Dorothy Fragaszy University of Georgia, USA

Katie Leighty University of Georgia, USA

Jessie Crast University of Georgia, USA

Tetsuro Matsuzawa Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, Japan

Satoshi Hirata Hayashibara Great Ape Research Institute, Japan

Misato Hayashi Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, Japan

Claudia Sousa Dep. Antropologia, FCSH, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal

Kathelijne Koops Dep. of Behavioural Biology, Utrecht University, Netherlands

Laura Martinez Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, Japan/France

Eduardo Ottoni Dep. Of Experimental Psychology, University of Sao Paulo, Brasil

Patricia Izar Dep. Of Experimental Psychology, University of Sao Paulo, Brasil

Tiago Falotico Dep. of Experimental Psychology, University of Sao Paulo, Brasil

WORKSHOP schedule and topics

Day 1 (29th August 2004, 14:30-17:00)

Speaker 1 - Misato Hayashi "Object manipulation and tool-use in chimpanzees"
Speaker 2 - Satoshi Hirata on behalf of Chiaru Houki "Learning and transmission of nut-cracking in chimpanzees"

Day 2 (30th August 2004, 14:15-17:00)

Speaker 1 - Dorothy Fragaszy "Characteristics that distinguish capuchins from chimpanzees"
Speaker 2 - Patricia Izar "The several species and their geographical location" , "Palm pith extraction - extractive foraging by capuchins"
Speaker 3 - Eduardo Ottoni "Watching the best nut-crackers (capuchins)"
Speaker 4 - Tiago Falotico "Experiments on nut-cracking by capuchins"
Speaker 5 - Claudia Sousa "Development of leaf-using behaviour by chimpanzees"
Speaker 6 - Dorothy Fragaszy and Jessie Crast "Fine manipulation by chimpanzees and capuchins"

An excursion to a valley in the Alps (Cogne, Italy)

Event: XX Congress of the International Primatological Society (IPS)
Date: 22-28 August 2004
Location: Lingotto Congress Center, Torino, Italy
Report by: Kathelijne Koops

The 20th meeting of the International Primatological Society took place in the beautiful city of Torino in northern Italy. The congress provided five full days of interesting talks, stimulating discussions and ample opportunities to exchange information with fellow primatologists. The main program included 11 plenary lectures, presented by world-renowned primatologists. In addition, 32 symposia were organized, touching on all major areas of primatology. And apart from these symposia, another 217 oral and 124 poster presentations were contributed. In order to fit all presentations into the congress timeframe, eight sessions were running simultaneously. This provided a real challenge for the congress attendants, having to choose between so many fascinating talks!

Monday the 23rd of August marked the beginning of the conference. D. Fragaszy, the president of the IPS, opened the meeting with a talk on "Prospective Primatology". She addressed 'the process of looking to the future' in primatology at two different levels. First, the study of prospectivity in the behavior of nonhuman primates. Second, the professional prospects for the field of primatology. This last point evoked many suggestions from the audience concerning the opportunities and responsibilities for primatologists in the future. Next, the incoming president, R. Wrangham, addressed the importance of coalitions both in nonhuman primates as well as in human primatologists. Especially, he pointed out the need for alliances between primatologists in the service of primate conservation. The third invited speaker of the morning was E. Visalberghi with a talk on tool use in capuchins. The question addressed was 'why is there plenty of evidence of tool use by capuchins in captivity, but not in the wild?' It was argued that researchers have been looking for tool use in the wrong environmental conditions. A habitat of low food availability should favor tool use, as was indeed found for capuchin monkeys living in a dry habitat in Brazil were they crack open nuts with tools. The last plenary speaker of the first conference day was T. Matsuzawa. His talk focused on the long-term research project exploring the chimpanzee's mind both in the wild and captivity. The importance of both an experimental approach in the wild and careful laboratory observations in a simulated natural environment was stressed.

After the lunch break the parallel sessions started. I choose to attend most of the talks belonging to the symposium "Current directions in ape cognition", organized by J. Call and M. Tomasello. Different research areas of ape cognition were addressed, such as social cognitive skills (M.Tomasello, L.A. Parr), social learning (A.Whiten), cognitive development (T.Matsuzawa) and comparative ape cognition (J. Call). In addition to this symposium I attended a talk on '"Meat sharing by the chimpanzees at Ngogo, Kibale National Park" by D.P. Watts. An interesting presentation that focused on testing the different hypotheses proposed to explain the function of meat sharing. The last session of the day I spend listening to talks on primate conservation. A talk on genetic variability in western lowland gorillas (by M. Douadi) provided me with new insights on the use of DNA to study the social structure of wild primate populations. In the evening of this first conference day there was an Italian "Aperitivo" in the Royal Gardens of Torino. The gardens provided a very beautiful setting in which to make new contacts and to renew old ones.

The second day started with a plenary lecture by W.Olupot on the so-called 'primate dispersal dilemma'. Followed by J. Altmann's talk on the long-term studies of the baboons in the Amboseli Basin. After the morning coffee break it was again time for the different symposia to start. The symposium of my choice was titled "Socioecological cognition", organized by E.P. Cunningham and C.H. Janson. This proved to be my favorite symposium of the congress. The talks in this symposium focused on the interaction of ecological and social pressures in the selection for particular cognitive skills in primates. R. Byrne addressed the cognitive basis of foraging routes and whether or not primates can be considered to have cognitive maps. What I found very interesting were the methods presented to study natural navigation skills in the field. An animal's goals can be inferred retrospectively from its behavior by recording foraging paths in detail and then working back. Field studies on spider monkeys (A. Valero) and chacma baboons (R.G. Noser) were presented which employed these methods. Two other field studies on foraging patterns were discussed. A study by A. Di Fiore on sympatric spider and woolly monkeys showed evidence for the use of specific routes in foraging. And northern muriquis were suggested to form a cognitive map of the location of productive fruit sources (J.P. Boubli, presented by K.B. Strier). F.B.M. de Waal and K. Bonnie provided insights into foraging behavior in captive primates, addressing respectively the topic of food sharing and social learning of foraging tasks.

Wednesday the 25th of August, day three of the congress was made up of symposia in the morning and the poster session in the afternoon. I attended the symposium on "Sympatric apes: socioecological divergence and evolution of great apes", organized by J. Yamagiwa and Y. Takenoshita. A presentation that appealed to me was "Ranging and party size in montane forest chimpanzees at Kahuzi-Biega National Park, DRC", by A.K. Basabose. His take-home message was that chimpanzee party size is not affected by fruit abundance per se, but rather by seasonality and distribution patterns of fruit. Another interesting talk, "Feeding competition and female social relationships in Mountain Gorillas of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda" (by M.M. Robbins), addressed the effect of feeding conditions and the type of feeding competition on female social relationships.The poster session in the afternoon was well attended and I truly enjoyed answering questions about my poster "Terrestrial nesting in the chimpanzees of the Nimba Mountains, Guinea, West Africa: environmental or social?"

Thursday also provided a wide variety of talks to choose from. I had great difficulty deciding between the two symposia on primate conservation and fission-fusion societies, as well as the student oral presentations. I choose to expand my knowledge on the different kinds of fission-fusion social systems. This symposium, organized by F. Aureli, included experts on both primate (i.e. chimpanzees, orangutans, atelins, strepsirrhines, baboons and human hunter gatherers) and non-primate species (i.e. mammalian carnivores, African elephants, whales and dolphins) that show different levels of flexibility in their fission-fusion societies. This comparative approach allowed the participants to evaluate whether, and to what extent, fission-fusion systems have played a role in the evolution of special behaviors as well as in cognitive adaptations. Being a primatologist it was especially informative to learn more about non-primate variants on the fission-fusion way of life.

The last day of the congress, Friday the 27th of August, I divided my time between several symposia. One of them, "Managing conflict: evidence from wild and captive primates", organized by E. Palagi and N. Koyama, was of great interest to me since I studied post-conflict interactions in the Arnhem chimpanzees as part of my masters. This symposium provided an overview of recent advances in this field of research both in captivity and the wild.
Another symposium I partly attended dealt with the reconstruction of the evolutionary origins of great ape intelligence. A new perspective was offered by C. van Schaik, who argued for the importance of slow life history as a facilitator of improved cognitive abilities, instead of the often-emphasized role of social complexity as the main selective agent.
And finally, I joined the last part of the symposium "Behavior, ecology and conservation of colobine monkeys". The talks concentrated on the effects of habitat fragmentation on colobine populations (D. Mbora, J. Anderson) and the conservation value of forest fragments (C.A. Chapman). What became clear from these talks was that even the colobine populations that have managed to survive in forest fragments will not continue to exist if current rates of clearing the forest are maintained. The congress was concluded in style, with a social dinner in a beautiful 17th century palazzo in central Torino. The climax of the evening was the moment when all primatologists present were asked to perform the best imitation of their study subject's call! A great ending to a very productive and successful congress.

A group photo of the session in IPS "Mirror neurons: Insights into imitative process"
From left in the front row: Andrew Whiten, Giacomo Rizzolatti, Michael Tomasello, Elisabetta Visalberghi
From left in the rear: Tetsuro Matsuzawa, Pier Francesco Ferrari

HOPE co-chairs' meeting in IPS, Turin in Italy, August 2004
From left to right, Michael Tomasello, Tetsuro Matsuzawa, and Richard Wrangham