A preliminary study of kinship and social organization in a semi-free-ranging group of Lemur catta

Linda Taylor, Robert W. Sussman

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67 Scopus citations


From long-term studies of a number of anthropoid species, many investigators have shown that kinship affinities affect social relationships. Factors such as proximity, social grooming, dominance rank, and mating patterns have been shown to be related to kinship. In this paper, we report the results of a preliminary study of the social organization of a group of prosimians (Lemur catta) in which individuals were identified and kinship affinities were known. We found that close matrilineal kin preferred to groom one another and to remain in close proximity more than did nonkin and distantly related animals. Furthermore, no copulations were observed within matrilines. These results are similar to those found in a number of species of anthropoids. This research was conducted on a semi-free-ranging group at the Duke University Primate Facility, Durham, North Carolina.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)601-614
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Primatology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 1985
Externally publishedYes



  • Lemur catta
  • grooming
  • kinship
  • mating
  • proximity
  • social organization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology

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