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Data from: Individual differences in sociocognitive traits in semi-free-ranging rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta)

Cite this dataset

Diaz, Alexis; Hernández-Pacheco, Raisa; Rosati, Alexandra (2024). Data from: Individual differences in sociocognitive traits in semi-free-ranging rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) [Dataset]. Dryad. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.pzgmsbcw4

Abstract

Characterizing individual differences in cognition is crucial for understanding the evolution of cognition as well as to test the biological consequences of different cognitive traits. Here, we harnessed the strengths of a uniquely large, naturally-living primate population at the Cayo Santiago Biological Field Station to characterized individual differences in rhesus monkey performance across two social cognitive tasks. A total of n = 204 semi-free-ranging adult rhesus monkeys participated in a data collection procedure, where we aimed to test individuals on both tasks at two time-points that were one year apart. In the socioemotional responses task, we assessed monkeys' attention to conspecific photographs with neutral versus negative emotional expressions. We found that monkeys showed overall declines in interest in conspecific photographs with age, but relative increases in attention to threat stimuli specifically, and further that these responses exhibited long-term stability across repeated testing. In the gaze following task we assessed monkeys' propensity to co-orient with an experimenter. Here, we found no evidence for age-related change in responses, and responses showed only limited repeatability over time. Finally, we found some evidence for common individual variation for performance across the tasks: monkeys that showed greater interest in conspecific photographs were more likely to follow a human's gaze. These results show how studies of comparative cognitive development and aging can provide insights into the evolution of cognition, and identify core primate social cognitive traits that may be related across and within individuals.

README: Data from: Individual differences in sociocognitive traits in semi-free-ranging rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta)

https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.pzgmsbcw4

Study Authors: Alexis A. Diaz, Raisa Hernández-Pacheco, & Alexandra G. Rosati

Correspondence to rosati@umich.edu or alexisdz@stanford.edu

Description of the data and file structure

This data set consists of two data files (.xlsx format) for the different components of the data reported in this work. For each file, there is a key tab in the file defining each variable reported in the main data tab. The specific files are:

  1. Diaz et al Rhesus Socioemotional Responses: This file has trial-level data from the socioemotional responses task across two years.
  2. Diaz et al Rhesus Gaze Following: This file has trial-level data from the gaze following task across two years.

Methods

See detailed methods in the manuscript. 

Funding

National Institute on Aging, Award: R21 20-0266

National Science Foundation, Award: 2217812

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Award: FG-2019-12054

National Science Foundation, Award: 2141410, Graduate Research Fellowship

National Center for Research Resources, Award: CM-5-P40RR003640

Office of Research Infrastructure Programs, Award: P40OD012217