Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Appears in Collections:Psychology Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: First observation of a chimpanzee with albinism in the wild: Social interactions and subsequent infanticide
Author(s): Leroux, Maël
Monday, Gideon
Chandia, Bosco
Akankwasa, John W
Zuberbühler, Klaus
Hobaiter, Catherine
Crockford, Catherine
Townsend, Simon W
Asiimwe, Caroline
Fedurek, Pawel
Contact Email:
Keywords: albinism
Pan troglodytes
Issue Date: 16-Jul-2021
Date Deposited: 30-Jul-2021
Citation: Leroux M, Monday G, Chandia B, Akankwasa JW, Zuberbühler K, Hobaiter C, Crockford C, Townsend SW, Asiimwe C & Fedurek P (2021) First observation of a chimpanzee with albinism in the wild: Social interactions and subsequent infanticide. American Journal of Primatology.
Abstract: Albinism—the congenital absence of pigmentation—is a very rare phenomenon in animals due to the significant costs to fitness of this condition. Both humans and non-human individuals with albinism face a number of challenges, such as reduced vision, increased exposure to ultraviolet radiation, or compromised crypticity resulting in an elevated vulnerability to predation. However, while observations of social interactions involving individuals with albinism have been observed in wild non-primate animals, such interactions have not been described in detail in non-human primates (hereafter, primates). Here, we report, to our knowledge, the first sighting of an infant with albinism in wild chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii), including social interactions between the infant, its mother, and group members. We also describe the subsequent killing of the infant by conspecifics as well as their behavior towards the corpse following the infanticide. Finally, we discuss our observations in relation to our understanding of chimpanzee behavior or attitudes towards individuals with very conspicuous appearances.
DOI Link: 10.1002/ajp.23305
Rights: © 2021 The Authors. American Journal of Primatology published by Wiley Periodicals LLC This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License (, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Notes: Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online
Licence URL(s):

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Leroux et al 2021_First observation of a chimpanzee with albinism in the wild_ social interactions and subsequent infanticide.pdfFulltext - Published Version532.62 kBAdobe PDFView/Open

This item is protected by original copyright

A file in this item is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons

Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

The metadata of the records in the Repository are available under the CC0 public domain dedication: No Rights Reserved

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.