Research on Primates at the Zoo Essay

Words: 1897
Pages: 8


A Zoo for a Primate Observation 11/15/2012

For this paper I decided to visit Zoo Atlanta to observe lowland gorillas. I got to the zoo at around eleven in the morning and found out the feeding times for the gorillas. Once I found them, after watching them for a little while I selected the most active group to go watch during feeding. The point of this trip was to make me feel as if I was doing a field laboratory observation of primate social behavior and it definitely did. As you read my paper I will include what I saw, my feelings towards it, and also any questions or facts I received during my visit from volunteers or signs throughout the exhibit. To put this paper
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The other thing that caught my attention that I thought was so cute was when Merry Leigh came up to the glass and thumped her chest. I thought that only happened it movies but it was the cutest thing. The volunteer said that this is her way of showing that she is the cutest one out there but can also be a sign to intimidate. Before Taz’s group was fed I observed their behavior for a couple hours. They were active especially compared to the Bachelor’s. The first thing I noticed was that Taz was sitting to the left of everyone at the back close to the fence/window. This brought me to question why and I was assured it was due to him being the “silverback” of the group. That means he is the protector, which is the father’s place. He sits there just about all day watching to make sure everything is going smoothly and that no one is acting up or is unsafe. He makes sure everyone is cooperating or using cooperative behavior. Just like in human families how the dad’s are the protectors it is the same scenario here. The children or “baby” gorillas played with each other throwing their arms around on each other while the mothers sat and watched. When they were done playing they would go climb on things or just be active. During my visit there was no conflict but at any point it could arise but the