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Marmoset monkeys expect the melody’s closing tone


In speech and music, words and notes depend on each other. Humans are highly sensitive to such dependencies, but the evolutionary origins of this capacity are poorly understood.

Cognitive biologists at the Faculty of Life Sciences conducted playback experiments with common marmoset monkeys and found that sensitivity to dependencies might have been present in the shared ancestor of marmosets and humans. The study results were recently published in the journal "Evolution and Human Behavior". [read more]

Publication in "Evolution and Human Behavior" Reber S. A., Šlipogor V., Oh J., Ravignani A., Hoeschele M., Bugnyar T., Fitch W. T. (2018). "Common marmosets are sensitive to simple dependencies at variable distances in an artificial grammar"

With the help of a novel method, the researchers were able to investigate the behavior of the monkeys with an unprecedented degree of precision (© Vedrana Šlipogor).