Snakes and Primate Vision
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19-03-2015, 06:14 PM
Snakes and Primate Vision
Quote:We May Have Snakes To Thank For Our Acute Vision

In a new paper published in the journal Primates, author William C. McGrew, a former professor of evolutionary primatology at the University of Cambridge, reports a high rate of venomous snake encounters by his team of primatologists seeking to observe unhabituated wild chimpanzees in Mount Assirik, Senegal, West Africa.

McGrew's snake-encounter analysis in the paper Snakes as hazards: modelling risk by chasing chimpanzees is one test of what's known as the snake-detection theory of primate origins, a set of hypotheses that suggest we (along with other primates) owe certain features of our evolution to the risks posed by death and injury from snakes.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/13.7/2015/03/19...ute-vision

This is based on Lynne A. Isbell's work laid out in her book The Fruit, the Tree, and the Serpent: Why We See So Well (2009). I have a PDF of the book if anyone is interested. I still need to read it.

By the way, McGrew worked at my university while I attended, but he left shortly before I switched my major over to anthropology.
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