Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Monkey Socialization: UC Berkeley Breakthrough

Monkey Socialization
At the University of Berkeley, they took a dozen or so of monkey families and had them live in one environment (neighborhood if you will).
One monkey, called Jeem, that had grown-up with Alpha parents that were the obvious leaders of another monkey community was relied upon to teach these other monkeys how to wash their fruit in natural running water before eating. Sure enough, all the monkeys soon followed with the fruit that was given to them all. It became the norm (the standard).
A forward thinking professor at Berkeley then implemented his partly trendy idea that centered around teaching monkeys to smoke – as it is cute and popular with the public and would help in raising grant money from the old money planted in tobacco interests. This experiment would also focus around social behavior.
All the monkeys were given cheap packs of cigarettes to smoke. It was normal for them to sit out in front of their sleeping habitats and smoke these cigarettes and chatter.  Jeem was given a pouch of tobacco that was an organically grown and was taught to roll his own cigarettes independent of the standard monkey order and outside of its environment. He was then let back into the environment each day with two to three of these hand rolled organic tobacco cigarettes.
The chatter became outrageous and almost crazed from the other monkeys as Jeem continued to smoke his hand rolled organic tobacco cigarettes and the others continued to only know about their cheap pack of cigarettes. The other monkeys became obsessed with Jeem. And each time Jeem lit up his hand rolled organic tobacco cigarettes they chattered and chattered – hoping squeaky wheel would get the grease and something would alter Jeem's behavior – for what they didn't even know.
Later Jeem was given the same organic tobacco but in a pack. And the others learned to shut up and the whole thing just went away --- Except the fact that it was all recorded and documented and made for an interesting grant on monkey socialization and behavior. The president even read about it.
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