Visual Communication


eyes closed: This is where an individual will reveal the white eyelids (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes of all ages and is a common behavior (Fontaine, 1981). This serves to communicate the resting state of an individual (Fontaine, 1981).

scalp retraction: This is when the scalp is drawn back and is emphasized by the gray crown hair (Fontaine, 1981). This is seen performed by young infants towards juveniles and when a more dominant individual approaches (Fontaine, 1981). This is thought to function ease acceptance of contact by an immature towards an adult (Fontaine, 1981).

mouth corner retraction, full lip retraction, grin: This is described as a graded series, with the teeth fully or partially exposed (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by infants and juveniles (Fontaine, 1981). This is seen when individuals approach or have contact with individuals that are more dominant than they are (Fontaine, 1981). This display functions as an appeasement during low agonistic situations and as a contact maintaining behavior during affiliative situations (Fontaine, 1981).

protruded lips: This is where the lips are hyperextended into a pucker (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by juveniles and adult females and occurs in food solicitation and in situations of when one individual does not want to groom another (Fontaine, 1981). During social grooming the prospective groomer will move away when given this behavior (Fontaine, 1981).

lip smack squint: This is where the scalp is protracted (pushed down) and the mouth is opened and closed (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is seen when an individual is approached by a more dominant individual (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes from age juvenile and up (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior functions as an appeasement signal (Fontaine, 1981).

open mouth threat: This is where the mouth is open and the face is in a tense position (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes from the age of juvenile on up (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior functions to signal aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

play face: This is where the mouth is opened and face is in a relaxed position (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior occurs during social play and is performed by both sexes from the age of juvenile on up (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior functions to signal playfulness on the part of the sender (Fontaine, 1981).

scalp retraction with protruded lips: This display is when an individual gives scalp retraction and protruded lips at the same time (Fontaine, 1981). This is given when an individual is startled (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen given by infants and juveniles of both sexes and by adult females (Fontaine, 1981). This is used to communicate pain and/or fear, and when this is given by infants, the mothers will retrieve them (Fontaine, 1981).

scalp retraction with mouth corner retraction or grin: This is when an individual gives scalp retraction with the corners of the mouth pulled back or a grin (Fontaine, 1981). This is seen when an individual is approached and contacted by an individual that is more dominant (Fontaine, 1981). This display is performed by older infants and juveniles of both sexes and by adult females (Fontaine, 1981). This is described as to communicate "conflict between approach and avoidance in potentially agonistic settings" (Fontaine, 1981).

tail wagging:This is when an individual will wag the tail from side-to-side (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen after squabbles and at the end of grooming (Fontaine, 1981). This display is performed by both sexes of older infants on up (Fontaine, 1981). This communicates general arousal on the part of the sender (Fontaine, 1981).

allogrooming solicitation: This is when an individual will sit erect and then will look up and/or away (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen between individuals that have social grooming for a long period of time (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is seen by older juveniles of both sexes, subadult males, and adult females (Fontaine, 1981). The individual this display is directed to will respond with grooming (Fontaine, 1981).

single leg jerk: This behavior is described as a "unilateral, abrupt leg extension-flexion" (Fontaine, 1981). This is performed by adult males when they are mildly annoyed or disturbed (Fontaine, 1981). This serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

hindquarters bounce: This is like single leg jerk except for that it is bilateral (Fontaine, 1981). This is performed by adult males when they are mildly annoyed or disturbed (Fontaine, 1981). This serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

branch slapping and arm raising: This is when an individual will raise the arms and/or then bring them down hard on a branch (Fontaine, 1981). This is performed by adult males when they are mildly annoyed or disturbed (Fontaine, 1981). This serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

quadrupedal stand and stare: This is when an adult male will stand up and stare at an individual that is causing him annoyance (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen in situations when adult males are moderately annoyed or disturbed (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

strut: This is when an adult male will move quadrupedally forward with the knees and elbows in a rigid fashion (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen when adult males are moderately to strongly annoyed or disturbed (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

branch rocking: This is when an adult male will sway from side-to-side while up in the trees (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen when adult males are moderately to strongly annoyed or disturbed (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

look away: This is when an individual will avoid eye contact with conspecifics (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes from subadult on up, and this occurs when the stimulus is persistently staring at the individual (Fontaine, 1981). The stimulus will respond with mutual avoidance of eye contact (Fontaine, 1981).

leg extension: This is when an individual will extend the hind leg on one side of the body (Fontaine, 1981). This is performed by both sexes from older juveniles on up, and this display is seen in situations of mild annoyance (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior serves to communicate low-level aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

arched back: This is when an individual will raise the back and form a strong curvature with the back (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is seen in situations where there is a sudden stimulus, in an attack, as a defensive threat, and by females during copulation (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes from older juveniles on up, and for the female this is used as a sexual presentation behavior towards her mate (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior serves to communicate fear and/or aggression or sexual readiness in the case of a female in estrus (Fontaine, 1981). This display makes the individual look larger (Fontaine, 1981).

piloerection: This is when an individual will piloerect the pelage of the dorsum and external limb surfaces (Fontaine, 1981). This display is seen during attacks of both conspecifics and different species, loud noises, and as a defensive threat posture (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes from older juveniles on up (Fontaine, 1981). This display serves to communicate moderate to intense fear and aggression (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior makes the individual look larger (Fontaine, 1981).

branch shaking: This is when an individual will briefly and vigorously shake branches (Fontaine, 1981). This is seen when allogrooming solicitation is ignored, or when social grooming is disrupted (Fontaine, 1981). This behavior is performed by both sexes in both subadult and adult stages (Fontaine, 1981). This display serves to communicate aggression (Fontaine, 1981).

Last Updated: May 8, 2007.
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