Wednesday, December 22, 2010

But Do Young Male Chimps Use Them as Guns?

Young female chimps treat sticks like dolls:

Researchers have reported some of the first evidence that chimpanzee youngsters in the wild may tend to play differently depending on their sex, just as human children around the world do. Although both young male and female chimpanzees play with sticks, females do so more often, and they occasionally treat them like mother chimpanzees caring for their infants, according to a study in the December 21st issue of Current Biology, a Cell Press publication.

The findings suggest that the consistently greater tendency, across all cultures, for girls to play more with dolls than boys do is not just a result of sex-stereotyped socialization, the researchers say, but rather comes partly from "biological predilections."

Ah, the old nature vs. nurture conflict.  Expect a counter study to be reported ASAP.  As usual, the correct answer is a mixture.

Spotted at Instapundit.

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