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Macaques Hug It Out

By Janekvorik [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

Macaques Hug It Out

Humans aren’t the only ones who offer each other comfort in times of distress. Researchers believe they’ve witnessed empathetic behavior in a species of macaque called Macaca tonkeana. The findings, discussed this week in Evolution & Human Behavior, describe how the macaques will sometimes console one another with a hug, caress, or even kiss after they’ve been treated aggressively by a fellow macaque. Scientists suggest M. tonkeana, which is considered the most peaceful and accepting species of macaque, can perceive emotions and help reduce stress levels in others.

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