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Weight of sadness: baboon moms carry dead babies for days


Weight of sadness: baboon moms carry dead babies for days

They even groom the lifeless body in behaviour that’s probably part of managing grief, according to experts

Cape Town bureau chief

Baboon mothers living in the wild carry their dead infants for up to 10 days, according to a new study.

Lead researcher Alecia Carter, who examined 12 cases of chacma baboon infant deaths in Namibia, said the strongest theory for why mothers do this is that they are managing their grief.

Carter, from University College London, led a team of anthropologists that spent 13 years observing baboons in the Tsaobis Nature Park between Windhoek and Swakopmund, and the findings have just been published in Royal Society Open Science (https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/10.1098/rsos.192206)...

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