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Appears in Collections:Psychology Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Chimpanzees modify intentional gestures to coordinate a search for hidden food
Authors: Roberts, Anna
Vick, Sarah-Jane
Roberts, Sam George Bradley
Menzel, Charles
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Issue Date: 16-Jan-2014
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Citation: Roberts A, Vick S, Roberts SGB & Menzel C (2014) Chimpanzees modify intentional gestures to coordinate a search for hidden food, Nature Communications, 5, Art. No.: 3088.
Abstract: Humans routinely communicate to coordinate their activities, persisting and elaborating signals to pursue goals that cannot be accomplished individually. Communicative persistence is associated with complex cognitive skills such as intentionality, because interactants modify their communication in response to another's understanding of their meaning. Here we show that two language-trained chimpanzees effectively use intentional gestures to coordinate with an experimentally naive human to retrieve hidden food, providing some of the most compelling evidence to date for the role of communicative flexibility in successful coordination in nonhumans. Both chimpanzees (named Panzee and Sherman) increase the rate of nonindicative gestures when the experimenter approaches the location of the hidden food. Panzee also elaborates her gestures in relation to the experimenter's pointing, which enables her to find food more effectively than Sherman. Communicative persistence facilitates effective communication during behavioural coordination and is likely to have been important in shaping language evolution.
Type: Journal Article
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Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: University of Chester
University of Chester
Georgia State University

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