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Friday Creature Feature: Not So Musical Monkeys
The Rhesus monkey is a “highly intelligent, lively animal that is docile when young” but new research says beat induction or the ability to pick up the beat from a varying rhythm is not something a rhesus monkey is capable of doing.
Rhesus monkeys are patient and do well in captivity and so they have been the default Old World Monkey used in health and science research: they have been cloned, helped develop vaccinations, and launched into space.
Henkjan Honing, a professor of Music Cognition at the Universiteit van Amsterdam and a team of neurobiologists led by Hugo Merchant from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México, studied a pair of monkeys: a 2 year old male named Aji and Yko, a 5 year old female, for their study.
Aji and Yko were not harmed during the study though they did have a portion of their scalp and the reference ear shaved to make attaching the EEG electrodes to their heads with tape easier. They were allowed to sit unrestrained and awake in a “monkey chair” that was placed in front of two loudspeakers in a dimly lit and quiet room.
The study mentioned “Food and water where given ad libitum.” the fancy way of saying food was provided freely. In their native homeland of Asia Rhesus monkeys like to eat seeds, fruits, and insects. It’s reasonable to assume Aji and Yko were not allowed to snack during the experiment, which is a shame because listening to “sequences based on a typical 2-measure rock drum accompaniment pattern” is more fun with popcorn.
Even though the rhesus monkeys are unable to detect the beat in music, a trait found both in human adults and newborns, the monkeys can detect rhythmic groups in music which is a trait they do share with us.
Earlier this week a fellow Old World monkey, a Japanese macaque, or snow monkey, named Darwin proved that monkeys and humans share more than just the anatomical and physiological: we also share the love of a good deal and a nice coat.
Darwin was found clad in a shearling coat and loitering at an Ikea in Toronto, Canada. He managed to escape his crate in a car parked in the lot and toddled off to explore without his owner’s permission.
Darwin was probably searching for a new monkey chair at the furniture store so he could hang out in style with Aji and Yko while they all enjoyed not being able to hear a beat.
1944: Camano Class Light Cargo Ship was laid down for the US Army as FS-289 at Wheeler Shipbuilding in Whitestone, NY.
1955 - 1963: Used as a cargo supply ship for the Texas Towers, a network of advanced radar stations located off the Eastern Seaboard. In 1957, Capt. Sixto Mangual was commander of the AKL-17 and in 1961 it was rechristened the USNS New Bedford. The New Bedford, sailing out of State Pier, was keeping vigil when Texas Tower No. 4 callapsed off the New Jersey coast during a January 1961 nor'easter.
2006: Design of the Tesla Turbine began on June 11, 2006. The Sea Bird was sold by Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service for commercial service.