Monkeying Around: Exploring the Jestful Nature of Human-Like Primates

New research has shown that some human-like primates have unique jokes. It has been observed that young mammals tease older ones. Scientists believe that “monkeying around” could help understand the evolution of humor among humans.

Article bay

--

[Photo by vishnudeep dixit from Pexels]

It has long been known that humor has a positive impact on human health. Laughter reduces stress and feelings of tension. When laughing, the body releases endorphins, commonly known as happiness hormones. They induce a sense of well-being, euphoric states, and even suppress pain perception.

Sense of humor among human-like primates

Jokes and jests also build bonds in society. Psychologists acknowledge this as a sort of “universal language” of our species. Sharing jokes can form new relationships and strengthen existing ones.

“Joking relies on complex cognitive abilities: understanding social norms, theory of mind, and anticipating others’ reactions. The characteristic teasing observed in pre-verbal children is associated with cognitive traits,” wrote the authors of a study published in the scientific journal “Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

However, scientists argue that there is evidence that some species of human-like primates exhibit very similar behaviors. Young primates (aged 3 to 5 years) tease older ones. But until now, it was not known why they do this.

In the article, researchers described the behavior of four species of human-like primates:

  • orangutans,
  • chimpanzees,
  • bonobos,
  • gorillas.
[Photo by esrageziyor from Pexels]

Young monkeys tease older ones

Researchers analyzed 75 hours of footage from zoos in San Diego and Leipzig. The article stated that a total of 142 clear cases were documented where…

--

--