blueyedwhitewolf wrote:*turns head uneasily*
wolves aren't evil at all. We may have "evolved" (sorry i still need proof about a missing link) from the chimp but our social structure is all wolf!
We did not evolve from "chimps", we evolved from an anscestor in common with the chimp.
Our social structure is "all wolf"? That would be an easy claim to make if you knew little about chimpanzee behaviour.
I'm not going to discuss evolution, merely point out that we do seem to have more in common socially with chimpanzees than wolves. So what if we do? There is no shame in it. It doesn't have to necessarily prove evolution any more than saying that the legend of Ergenekon proves that we came from wolves.
It would be impossible to list every intricate detail of primate/canid social behaviour without dragging, so I'll limit myself to writing what the two animals DON'T have in common.
There is a distinct linear dominance hierarchy in male chimpanzees, and males are dominant over females (Goldberg & Wrangham 1997).
With few exceptions, the majority of primitive human civilizations in the past and today (masai, korowai, etc.) are male dominated. This differs from wolves, where females are generally treated no different to the males and can readily become alpha just as easily.
Meat is social currency used to develop and maintain alliances between adult males; it is usually shared reciprocally and non-randomly (Mitani & Watts 2001).
Meat was, and still is considered a food source of greater value than vegetable in the majority of primitive human civilizations, not just as a form of nutrition, but as a form of currency. Providers of meat were/are higher on the social ladder due to the amount of risk involved in a hunt. Wolves have no choice in the matter, whereas primates show a great deal of willpower to risk their lives for an alternate food source which is more difficult and more dangerous to catch than the more easily aquired vegetables.
Hunting is cooperative, with multiple males involved in cornering and capturing prey.
Whereas the gender of hunters is disregarded in wolves (females are apparently considered better), it is almost universal for human tribes to have solely male hunters.
During the juvenile period, from about six to nine years old, chimpanzees remain close to their mothers but play independently and have greater social interactions with other community members.
Young wolves become fully independant at a mere age of 2-3 years. I think it's obvious who we have more in common with here.
Adolescent females spend some of their time moving between groups and are supported by their mothers during agonistic encounters, while adolescent males spend more time with adult males in social activities such as boundary patrols and hunting parties (Bard 1995).
I've never heard of wolf cubs deliberately sticking to groups of their own gender. As with hunting, sÂ£x is of little consequence to the wolves. Human children on the other hand, like chimps, more commonly associate with members of their own gender.
Highly distinctive behavioral differences between populations of chimpanzees have been observed and documented. These behavioral differences between communities include 39 different patterns of tool-use, grooming, and courtship behaviors and are classified as cultural differences (Whiten et al. 1999). Behaviors are classified as culture if inter-generational transmission of behavior occurs through social or observational learning to become a population level characteristic. That is, these behaviors are not linked to genetic differences among subpopulations nor are they related to ecological differences between study sites. While some behaviors are species typical, such as nest building, others are far from uniform across chimpanzee populations. Termite or ant fishing, which may be the most famous examples of chimpanzee tool use are seen only in some populations while nut cracking behavior is seen only in West Africa (McGrew 1994; Whiten et al. 1999).
Differing wolf "cultures" are usually classified by genetics and morphology. With chimpanzees, it is behaviour and habits, just like in humans. Each culture specialises in something different from the other, with the level of tool use varying in advancement (eg. West African chimpanzees crack nuts, despite being the same species as the rest of the population on the continent). These skills are not instinctive, and are passed down through generations. Human civilization was and still is teaming with a diversity that goes deeper than simple skull proportions and protein sequences.
Apologies if I went off topic.
There is now a growing band of us, who came to the African bush with all our prejudices, with all that 'common knowledge' about hyenas which proved so totally wrong, and who just fell for the spell of animals which were so totally different- Hans Kruuk