Conflict and post-conflict behavior in a small group od Chimpanzees

Agustin Fuentes, Nicholas Malone, Crickette Sanz, Megan Matheson, Lorien Vaughan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Chimpanzee research plays a central role in the discussions of conflict negotiation. Reconciliation, or the attraction and affiliation of former opponents following conflict, has been proposed as a central element of conflict negotiation in chimpanzees and various other taxa. In an attempt to expand the database of chimpanzee conflict resolution, conflict and post-conflict behavior were recorded for a small group of socially housed chimpanzees at the Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute, at Central Washington University. Data were collected over six 6-week periods between 1997 and 2000, for a total of 840 hours of observation, resulting in a substantial post-conflict (PC) and matched control (MC) data set. The data demonstrate this group's tendencies to maintain visual contact and closer proximity after conflicts. Dyadic corrected conciliatory tendencies ranged between 0-37.5% and averaged 17.25% across all dyads. Individual corrected conciliatory tendencies ranged between 5.8 and 32%. The results of this study combined with recent publications on captive and free-ranging chimpanzee post-conflict behavior suggest that variation in post-conflict behavior may be important to our understanding of chimpanzee conflict negotiation, and may also have implications for the design and management of captive chimpanzee enclosures and social groups, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)223-235
Number of pages13
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Animal Science and Zoology


  • Chimpanzee
  • Conflict
  • Pan troglodytes
  • Post-conflict behavior
  • Reconciliation


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