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Cost-benefit trade-offs of aquatic resource exploitation in the context of hominin evolution

Coûts et avantages de l’exploitation des ressources aquatiques dans le contexte de l’évolution des hominines
Gregorio de Chevalier, Sebastien Bouret, Ameline Bardo, Bruno Simmen, Cécile Garcia et Sandrine Prat

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1Several primate species have been reported to exploit aquatic fauna and flora in coastal, riverine and lacustrine habitats. Nevertheless, the evolutionary scenarios and mechanisms behind the emergence of this behavior in both human and non-human primates remain largely overlooked in the literature. Yet, this issue is particularly important for our understanding of human evolution, as hominins represent the primate group with the highest degree of adaptedness to aquatic environments. It is also the only group in which true coastal and maritime adaptations have evolved, and coupled with them, novel techniques for the exploitation of available resources associated to such habitats. In the present study, we review the current literature on primate foraging strategies related to the exploitation of aquatic resources and their putative associated cognitive operations. Firstly, we provide an overview of the main characteristics of aquatic resource consumption by non-human primates. Secondly, we compare potential differences in costs and benefits between foraging for terrestrial or aquatic foods. Subsequently, we evaluate the available evidence for intentionality in the consumption of aquatic resources by non-human primates and extinct hominins. In this context, we propose that aquatic resource consumption in primates can be interpreted as a highly site-specific behavioral expression of a generic adaptive foraging decision-making process, emerging in sites at which the local cost-benefit trade-offs contextually favor aquatic over terrestrial foods. Within this framework, we finally discuss the potential impacts that the unique intensification of this behavior in hominins may have had on the evolution of the human brain and spatial ecology.

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Gregorio de Chevalier, Sebastien Bouret, Ameline Bardo, Bruno Simmen, Cécile Garcia et Sandrine Prat, « Cost-benefit trade-offs of aquatic resource exploitation in the context of hominin evolution »Bulletins et mémoires de la Société d’Anthropologie de Paris [En ligne], 35(S) | 2023, mis en ligne le 14 janvier 2023, consulté le 29 janvier 2023. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/bmsap/10937 ; DOI : https://doi.org/10.4000/bmsap.10937

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Auteurs

Gregorio de Chevalier

UMR 7194 HNHP, MNHN, CNRS, UPVD, Département Homme et Environnement, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France ; UMR 7206 Éco-anthropologie, MNHN, CNRS, Université de Paris, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France
gregoriochevalier[at]gmail.com

Sebastien Bouret

UMRS 1127 INSERM, UMR 7225 CNRS, Motivation, Brain and Behavior Team, Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle Épinière (ICM), Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, Paris, France

Ameline Bardo

UMR 7194 HNHP, MNHN, CNRS, UPVD, Département Homme et Environnement, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France ; Skeletal Biology Research Centre, School of Anthropology and Conservation, University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom

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Bruno Simmen

UMR 7206 Éco-anthropologie, MNHN, CNRS, Université de Paris, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France

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Cécile Garcia

UMR 7206 Éco-anthropologie, MNHN, CNRS, Université de Paris, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France

Articles du même auteur

Sandrine Prat

UMR 7194 HNHP, MNHN, CNRS, UPVD, Département Homme et Environnement, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France

Articles du même auteur

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CC-BY-NC-ND-4.0

Creative Commons - Attribution - Pas d'Utilisation Commerciale - Pas de Modification 4.0 International - CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

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