The aim of this study was to verify whether chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) demonstrate an auditory laterality during the orientation reaction, and which hemisphere is responsible for processing the emotional stimuli and which for the species-specific vocalizations.
The study involved nine chimpanzees from the Warsaw Municipal Zoological Garden. They were tested individually in their bedrooms. Chimpanzees approached a tube filled with food, located in the centre of the cage. Randomly selected sounds were played from the speakers when the subject was focused on getting food. Individual reactions were observed and outcomes reported. The four types of sound used: thunderstorm, dog barking, chimpanzee vocalization and a zookeeper’s voice.
To test whether chimpanzees demonstrate auditory laterality we used a single sample X2 test. The existence of auditory laterality has been confirmed. The sound of the storm caused the orientation reaction to the left, while chimpanzee vocalization - to the right. On this basis we can conclude that among chimpanzees, arousing stimuli are being processed by the right hemisphere, and species-specific vocalizations by the left. However, the set of stimuli was limited so the study did not unequivocally resolve this issue.
Basile, M., Lemasson, A., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2009). Social and Emotional Values of Sounds Infl uence Human (Homo sapiens) and Non-Human Primate (Cercopithecus campbelli) Auditory Laterality. PLoS ONE, 4(7), e6295, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0006295.
Beecher, M., Petersen, M., Zoloth, S., Moody, D., & Stebbins, W. (1979). Perception of conspecifi c vocalizations by Japanese macaques: evidence for selective attention and neural lateralization. Brain Behav. Evol., 16, 443-460.
Bisazza, A., De Santo, A., Bonso, S., & Sovrano, V.A. (2002). Frogs and toads in front of a mirror: lateralisation of response to social stimuli in tadpoles of fi ve anuran species. Behavioural Brain Research, 134, 417-424.
Boye, M., Gunturkun, O., & Vauclair, J. (2005). Right ear advantage for conspecifi c calls in adults and subadults, but not infants, California sea lions (Zalophus californianus): hemispheric specialization for communication? European Journal of Neuroscience, 21, 1727-1732.
Byrne, R.A., Kuba, M.J., Meisel, D.V., Giebel, U., & Mather, J.A. (2006a). Does Octopus vulgaris have preferred arms? Journal of Comparative Psychology, 120(3), 198-204.
Byrne, R.A., Kuba, M.J., Meisel, D.V., Griebel, U., & Macher, J.A. (2006b). Octopus arm choice is strongly infl uenced by eye use. Behavioural Brain Research, 172, 195-201.
Cantalupo, C., & Hopkins, W.D. (2001). Asymmetric Broca’s area in great apes. Nature, 414, 505.
Chapelin, A.S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2009). Lateralization for visual processes: eye preference in Campbell’s monkeys (Cercopithecus c. campbelli). Animal Cognition, 12, 11-19.
Gilda Costa, R., & Hauser, M.D. (2006). Vervet monkeys and humans show brain asymmetries for processing conspecifi c vocalizations, but with opposite patterns of laterality. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, 273, 2313-2318.
Levy, J. (1977). The mammalian brain and the adaptive advantage of cerebral asymmetry. Ann. New York Academ. Sci., 299, 264-272.
Petersen, M.R., Beecher, M.D., Zoloth, S.R., Moody, D.B., & Stebbins, W.C. (1978). Neural lateralization of species-specifi c vocalizations by Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata). Scienc, 202, 324-327.
Reinholz-Trojan, A., Włodarczyk, E., Trojan, M., Stefańska, J., & Kulczyński, A. (2012). Hemispheric Specialization in Domestic Dogs (Canis familiaris) for Processing Different Types of Acoustic Stimuli. Behavioural Processes, 91, 202-205.
Rogers, L.J. (1989). Laterality in animals. The International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 3, 5-25.
Rogers, L.J., Vallortigara, G., & Andrew, R.J. (2013). Divided brains. The Biology and Behaviour of Brain Asymmetries. Cambridge University Press, New York, p. 229.
Scheumann, M., Zimmermann, E. (2008). Sex-specifi c asymmetries in communication sound perception are not related to hand preference in an early primate. BMC Biology, 6(3). doi: