“There’s the alpha male,” she said, immediately sizing up the cast of characters.
A zoo official said the alpha was a 16-year-old named Hank. He was stretched out like an overfed potentate, relaxing at the base of a tree from his duties as a propagator of the species. Not far away on a tree branch, a 7-year-old male named Kipper kept a worshipful eye on Hank, his role model.
“Young males pick out an older male — it doesn’t have to be the alpha — and follow him around and study everything he does or doesn’t do,” Dr. Goodall explained. “It’s part of their separation from Mom.”
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
By John Noble Wilford - From The New York Times: