Rhesus monkeys consider whether someone can or cannot see them when trying to steal food, indicating they have the ability to reason about the mental states of others, according to a study published this month in Current Biology.
In each of six experiments, two people stood in front of a platform, each with a grape attached to the platform. The experiments created competitive conditions, the monkeys were competing with the humans for the grapes.
The 115 monkeys tested only took the grape when they could tell that a person was not looking at them. The experiments varied from one person looking at the monkey and the other with their back turned, to one person having their eyes covered with cardboard and the other with only their mouth covered with cardboard.
Jacqueline Weaver | EurekAlert!
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