Japanese macaques


Japanese macaques, or Japanese snow monkeys, (Macaca fuscata) grooming. Grooming maintains social bonds withing the troop. Japanese macaques are famous because in 1952, a group of researchers gave a group of snow monkeys some sweet potatos to eat. One female macaque washed her potato in a stream before eating it. Soon after, other monkeys also washed their potatos prior to consumption. in fact, potato washing is now common among the snow monkeys. This discovery proves that non-human primates can inherit cultural traditions from past generations.

Credit: Aaron Ferster / Science Source

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