Lise Meitner Research Group Technological Primates

The Technological Primates Research Group aims to investigate tool behaviour across primate species, environments and time. Our overall research focuses on technological evolution and the origin of tool use in our own species and all known tool using non-human primates.

Non-human primates can provide a model for tool use in early hominins. This offers a real world comparative framework to expand our knowledge regarding the adaptive significance of tool mediated behaviour within the primate lineage. Comparative studies across the primate order provide the opportunity to explore social and ecological variables associated with the emergence and development of tool use. Our group integrates new approaches that synthesise field and laboratory-based methods derived from the disciplines of primatology, archaeology, genetics, robotics and comparative psychology.  We are part of an extensive network bridging field sites of extant technological primates and archaeological sites of ancestral humans to comprehensively study the evolution of and behaviours associated with tool use. 

This group is led by Dr Lydia V. Luncz, for questions and enquiries please email:
Lydia_Luncz@[>>> Please remove the text! <<<]eva.mpg.de

Group staff

Publications

2024

Rufo, H. P., Ferreira, L. G., Ottoni, E. B., & Falótico, T. (2024). Toxic tasting: How capuchin monkeys avoid grasshoppers’ chemical defenses. Primates, 65(4), 235-241.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Russo, G. A., Prang, T. C., McGechie, F. R., Kuo, S., Ward, C. V., Feibel, C., & Nengo, I. O. (2024). An ape partial postcranial skeleton (KNM-NP 64631) from the Middle Miocene of Napudet, northern Kenya. Journal of Human Evolution, 192: 103519.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Arandjelovic, M., Stephens, C. R., Dieguez, P., Maldonado, N., Bocksberger, G., Després‐Einspenner, M., Debetencourt, B., Estienne, V. L., Kalan, A. K., McCarthy, M., Granjon, A.-C., Städele, V., Harder, B., Hacker, L., Landsmann, A., Lynn, L. K., Pfund, H., Ročkaiová, Z., Sigler, K., Widness, J., Wilken, H., Buzharevski, A., Goffe, A. S., Havercamp, K., Luncz, L. V., Sirianni, G., Wessling, E. G., Wittig, R. M., Boesch, C., & Kühl, H. S. (2024). Highly precise community science annotations of video camera‐trapped fauna in challenging environments (advance online). Remote Sensing in Ecology and Conservation.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Falótico, T., Macedo, A. C., de Jesus, M. A., Espinola, T., & Valença, T. (2024). Nut-cracking success and efficiency in two wild capuchin monkey populations. Royal Society Open Science, 11: 240161.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Westra, E., Fitzpatrick, S., Brosnan, S. F., Gruber, T., Hobaiter, C., Hopper, L. M., Kelly, D., Krupenye, C., Luncz, L. V., Theriault, J., & Andrews, K. (2024). In search of animal normativity: A framework for studying social norms in non‐human animals. Biological Reviews, 99(3), 1058-1074.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Badihi, G., Nielsen, D. R. K., Garber, P. A., Gill, M., Jones-Engel, L., Maldonado, A. M., Dore, K. M., Cramer, J. D., Lappan, S., Dolins, F., Sy, E. Y., Fuentes, A., Nijman, V., & Hansen, M. F. (2024). Perspectives on conservation impacts of the global primate trade (advance online). International Journal of Primatology.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Valença, T., Oliveira Affonço, G., & Falótico, T. (2024). Wild capuchin monkeys use stones and sticks to access underground food. Scientific Reports, 14: 10415.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Finestone, E. M., Plummer, T. W., Vincent, T. H., Blumenthal, S. A., Ditchfield, P. W., Bishop, L. C., Oliver, J. S., Herries, A. I., Palfery, C. V., Lane, T. P., McGuire, E., Reeves, J. S., Rodés, A., Whitfield, E., Braun, D. R., Bartilol, S. K., Rotich, N. K., Parkinson, J. A., Lemorini, C., Caricola, I., Kinyanjui, R. N., & Potts, R. (2024). New Oldowan locality Sare-Abururu (ca. 1.7 Ma) provides evidence of diverse hominin behaviors on the Homa Peninsula, Kenya. Journal of Human Evolution, 190: 103498.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Sirianni, G., Tiago, F., Caricola, I., Bocioaga, C. M., Lemorini, C., & Spinapolice, E. E. (2024). Hammer-stones to open macaúba nuts and unintentionally flake production in wild bearded capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) at Ubajara National Park (Brazil): An archeological approach. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 55: 104472.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Benedict, T., Kuo, S., Adams, N. A. J., Ach, T., Michaels, R., & Zachwieja, A. J. (2024). A thyroidea ima artery variation providing collateral circulation to the mediastinum. Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy, 46(4), 507-512.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Tiago, F., Valença, T., Verderane, M. P., Santana, B. C., & Sirianni, G. (2024). Mapping nut-cracking in a new population of wild capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) at Ubajara National Park, Brazil. American Journal of Primatology, 86(4): e23595.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Crockford, C., Arandjelovic, M., Deschner, T., Gone Bi, Z. B., Herbinger, I., Kalan, A., Kühl, H., Leendertz, F. H., Luncz, L. V., Normand, E., & Wittig, R. M. (2024). Christophe Boesch (1951–2024): Primatology pioneer with a long-term vision for research and conservation (advance online). International Journal of Primatology.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

McGrosky, A., Swanson, Z. S., Rimbach, R., Bethancourt, H., Ndiema, E., Nzunza, R., Braun, D. R., Rosinger, A. Y., & Pontzer, H. (2024). Total daily energy expenditure and elevated water turnover in a small-scale semi-nomadic pastoralist society from Northern Kenya. Annals of Human Biology, 51(1): 2310724.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Gamalo, L. E., Ilham, K., Jones‐Engel, L., Gill, M., Sweet, R., Aldrich, B., Phiapalath, P., Van Bang, T., Ahmed, T., Kite, S., Paramasivam, S., Seiha, H., Zainol, M. Z., Nielsen, D. R. K., Ruppert, N., Fuentes, A., & Hansen, M. F. (2024). Removal from the wild endangers the once widespread long‐tailed macaque. American Journal of Primatology, 86(3): e23547.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Muhammad, R., Kaikaew, T., Panjan, S., Meesawat, S., Thabthimthong, W., Payungporn, S., Apipattarachaiwong, J., Kanthaswamy, S., Hamada, Y., Luncz, L. V., & Malaivijitnond, S. (2024). Influence of COVID-19 on the emergence of stone-tool use behavior in a population of common long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis fascicularis) in Thailand. American Journal of Primatology, 86(2): e23580.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Mosher, S. G., Power, M. J., Quick, L. J., Haberzettl, T., Kasper, T., Kirsten, K. L., Braun, D. R., & Faith, J. T. (2024). Examining the effects of climate change and human impacts on a high-resolution, late Holocene paleofire record from South Africa's winter rainfall zone. Quaternary Science Advances, 14: 100194.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

2023

Li, L., Reeves, J. S., Lin, S. C., Braun, D. R., & McPherron, S. P. (2023). Did Early Pleistocene hominins control hammer strike angles when making stone tools? Journal of Human Evolution, 183: 103427.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Ranhorn, K. L., Mavuso, S. S., Colarossi, D., Dogandžić, T., O'Brien, K., Ribordy, M., Ssebuyungo, C., Warren, S., Harris, J. W., Braun, D. R., & Ndiema, E. (2023). By the lakeshore: Multi-scalar geoarchaeology in the Turkana Basin at GaJj17, Koobi Fora (Kenya). Quaternary Science Reviews, 317: 108257. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277379123003050.
Open Access    BibTeX   Endnote   

Bobe, R., Aldeias, V., Alemseged, Z., Anemone, R. L., Archer, W., Aumaître, G., Bamford, M. K., Biro, D., Bourlès, D. L., Doyle Boyd, M., Braun, D. R., Capelli, C., d’Oliveira Coelho, J., Habermann, J. M., Head, J. J., Keddadouche, K., Kupczik, K., Lebatard, A.-E., Lüdecke, T., Macôa, A., Martínez, F. I., Mathe, J., Mendes, C., Paulo, L. M., Pinto, M., Presnyakova, D., Püschel, T. A., Regala, F. T., Sier, M., Ferreira da Silva, M. J., Stalmans, M., & Carvalho, S. (2023). The first Miocene fossils from coastal woodlands in the southern East African Rift. iScience, 26(9): 107644.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Reeves, J. S., Proffitt, T., Malaivijitnond, S., & Luncz, L. V. (2023). Emergent technological variation in archaeological landscapes: a primate perspective. Journal of The Royal Society Interface, 20(203): 20230118.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Finestone, E. M., Plummer, T. W., Vincent, T. H., Blumenthal, S. A., Ditchfield, P. W., Bishop, L. C., Herries, A. I., Palfery, C. V., Lane, T. P., Mcguire, E., Reeves, J. S., Braun, D. R., Bartilol, S. K., Rotich, N. K., Parkinson, J. A., Lemorini, C., Caricola, I., Kinyanjui, R. N., & Potts, R. (2023). New Oldowan locality Sare River (ca. 1.7 Ma) provides evidence of diverse hominin behaviors on the Homa Peninsula, Kenya. American Journal of Biological Anthropology, 180(S75), 53.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Proffitt, T., Reeves, J. S., Braun, D. R., Malaivijitnond, S., & Luncz, L. V. (2023). Wild macaques challenge the origin of intentional tool production. Science Advances, 9(10): eade8159.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Plummer, T. W., Oliver, J. S., Finestone, E. M., Ditchfield, P. W., Bishop, L. C., Blumenthal, S. A., Lemorini, C., Caricola, I., Bailey, S. E., Herries, A. I. R., Parkinson, J. A., Whitfield, E., Hertel, F., Kinyanjui, R. N., Vincent, T. H., Li, Y., Louys, J., Frost, S. R., Braun, D. R., Reeves, J. S., Early, E. D. G., Onyango, B., Lamela-Lopez, R., Forrest, F. L., He, H., Lane, T. P., Frouin, M., Nomade, S., Wilson, E. P., Bartilol, S. K., Rotich, N. K., & Potts, R. (2023). Expanded geographic distribution and dietary strategies of the earliest Oldowan hominins and Paranthropus. Science, 379(6632), 561-566.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Dunmore, C. J., Karakostis, F. A., van Leeuwen, T., Lu, S.-C., & Proffitt, T. (2023). Tool use and the hand. In C. Hirst, R. Gilmour, F. Cardoso, & K. Plomp (Eds.), Behaviour in our bones: How human behaviour influences skeletal morphology (pp. 135-171). Elsevier.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Ford, L. B., Bethancourt, H. J., Swanson, Z. S., Nzunza, R., Wutich, A., Brewis, A., Young, S., Almeida, D. M., Douglass, M., Ndiema, E. K., Braun, D. R., Pontzer, H., & Rosinger, A. Y. (2023). Water insecurity, water borrowing and psychosocial stress among Daasanach pastoralists in northern Kenya. Water International, 28(1), 63-86.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Henke-von der Malsburg, J., Fichtel, C., & Kappeler, P. M. (2023). Retaining memory after hibernation: Performance varies independently of activity levels in wild grey mouse. Ethology, 29(1), 12-23.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Koops, K., Arandjelovic, M., Hobaiter, C., Kalan, A., Luncz, L. V., Musgrave, S., Samuni, L., Sanz, C., & Carvalho, S. (2023). Chimpanzee culture in context: Comment on “Blind alleys and fruitful pathways in the comparative study of cultural cognition” by Andrew Whiten. Physics of Life Reviews, 44, 77-80.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Proffitt, T., Reeves, J. S., Falótico, T., Arroyo, A., Torre, I. d. l., Ottoni, E. B., & Luncz, L. V. (2023). Identifying intentional flake production at the dawn of technology: a technological and 3D geometric morphometric study. Journal of Archaeological Science, 152: 105740.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Reeves, J. S., Proffitt, T., Almeida-Warren, K., & Luncz, L. V. (2023). Modeling Oldowan tool transport from a primate perspective. Journal of Human Evolution, 181: 103399.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Reeves, J. S., Tan, A., Malaivijitnond, S., & Luncz, L. V. (2023). Simulation and social network analysis provide insight into the acquisition of tool behaviour in hybrid macaques. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 290(1995): 2022276.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Swanson, Z. S., Bethancourt, H., Nzunza, R., Ndiema, E., Braun, D. R., Rosinger, A. Y., & Pontzer, H. (2023). The effects of lifestyle change on indicators of cardiometabolic health in semi-nomadic pastoralists. Evolution, Medicine, & Public Health , 11(1), 318-331.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

2022

Patterson, D. B., Du, A., Faith, J. T., Rowan, J., Uno, K., Behrensmeyer, A. K., Braun, D. R., & Wood, B. A. (2022). Did vegetation change drive the extinction of Paranthropus boisei? Journal of Human Evolution, 173: 103154.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Lüdecke, T., Leichliter, J. N., Aldeias, V., Bamford, M. K., Biro, D., Braun, D. R., Capelli, C., Cybulski, J. D., Duprey, N. N., Ferreira da Silva, M. J., Foreman, A. D., Habermann, J. M., Haug, G. H., Martínez, F. I., Mathe, J., Mulch, A., Sigman, D. M., Vonhof, H., Bobe, R., Carvalho, S., & Martínez-García, A. (2022). Carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen stable isotopes in modern tooth enamel: A case study from Gorongosa National Park, central Mozambique. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 10: 2022.958032.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Luncz, L. V., Braun, D. R., Marreiros, J., Bamford, M., Zeng, C., Pacome, S. S., Junghenn, P., Buckley, Z., Yao, X., & Carvalho, S. (2022). Chimpanzee wooden tool analysis advances the identification of percussive technology. iScience, 25(11): 105315.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Luncz, L. V., Arroyo, A., Falótico, T., Quinn, P., & Proffitt, T. (2022). A primate model for the origin of flake technology. Journal of Human Evolution, 171: 103250.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Proffitt, T., Reeves, J. S., Pacome, S. S., & Luncz, L. V. (2022). Identifying functional and regional differences in chimpanzee stone tool technology. Royal Society Open Science, 9(9): 220826.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Li, L., Reeves, J. S., Lin, S. C., Tennie, C., & McPherron, S. P. (2022). Quantifying knapping actions: A method for measuring the angle of blow on flakes. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 14(8): 156.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Snyder, W. D., Reeves, J. S., & Tennie, C. (2022). Early knapping techniques do not necessitate cultural transmission. Science Advances, 8: eabo2894.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Key, A., Lauer, T., Skinner, M. M., Pope, M., Bridgland, D. R., Noble, L., & Proffitt, T. (2022). On the earliest Acheulean in Britain: First dates andin-situ artefacts from the MIS 15 site of Fordwich (Kent, UK). Royal Society Open Science, 9: 211904.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Hansen, M. F., Gill, M., Briefer, E. F., Nielsen, D. R. K., & Nijman, V. (2022). Monetary value of live trade in a commonly traded primate, the long-tailed Macaque, based on global trade statistics. Frontiers in Conservation Science, 3: 839131.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Carvalho, S., Wessling, E. G., Abwe, E. E., Almeida‐Warren, K., Arandjelovic, M., Boesch, C., Danquah, E., Diallo, M. S., Hobaiter, C., Hockings, K., Humle, T., Ikemeh, R. A., Kalan, A. K., Luncz, L. V., Ohashi, G., Pascual‐Garrido, A., Piel, A., Samuni, L., Soiret, S., Sanz, C., & Koops, K. (2022). Using nonhuman culture in conservation requires careful and concerted action. Conservation Letters, 15(2): e12860.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

2021

Cissewski, J., & Luncz, L. V. (2021). Symbolic signal use in wild chimpanzee gestural communication?: A theoretical framework. Frontiers in Psychology, 12: 718414.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Reeves, J. S., Proffitt, T., & Luncz, L. V. (2021). Modeling a primate technological niche. Scientific Reports, 11(1): 23139.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Proffitt, T., Reeves, J. S., Benito-Calvo, A., Sánchez-Romero, L., Arroyo, A., Malaijivitnond, S., & Luncz, L. V. (2021). Three-dimensional surface morphometry differentiates behaviour on primate percussive stone tools. Journal of The Royal Society Interface, 18(184): 20210576.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Reeves, J. S., Braun, D. R., Finestone, E. M., & Plummer, T. W. (2021). Ecological perspectives on technological diversity at Kanjera South. Journal of Human Evolution, 158: 103029.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Proffitt, T., Bargalló, A., & de la Torre, I. (2021). The effect of raw material on the identification of knapping skill: A case study from Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory, 29(1), 50-82.
Open Access    DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Arroyo, A., Falótico, T., Burguet-Coca, A., Expósito, I., Quinn, P., & Proffitt, T. (2021). Use-wear and residue analysis of pounding tools used by wild capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) from Serra da Capivara (Piauí, Brazil). Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 35: 102690.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Douglass, M., Davies, B., Braun, D. R., Tyler Faith, J., Power, M., & Reeves, J. S. (2021). Deriving original nodule size of lithic reduction sets from cortical curvature: An application to monitor stone artifact transport from bipolar reduction. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 35: 102671.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Proffitt, T. (2021). Prehistoric Stone Tools of Eastern Africa: A Guide written by John J. Shea. Journal of African Archaeology, 19, 127-128.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

Pykles, B. C., & Reeves, J. S. (2021). Hawaiian Latter-day Saints in the Utah Desert: The negotiation of identity at Iosepa. Historical Archaeology, 55, 501-510.
DOI    BibTeX   Endnote   

2020

Luncz, L. V., & van de Waal, E. (2020). Cultural transmission in dispersing primates. In L. M. Hopper, & S. R. Ross (Eds.), Chimpanzees in Context (pp. 410-427). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
BibTeX   Endnote