Date of Award

May 2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Trudy Turner

Committee Members

Rafael Rodriguez, Joseph Gray


This study observed behavior and hormonal responses among vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus) in two separate stages of the rehabilitation process at a rehabilitation and wildlife center in South Africa. The aim of this study is to determine whether groups undergoing the rehabilitation process exhibit significantly different mean fecal cortisol concentration or mean behavioral frequency rates, at the introduction and secondary semi-wild stages.

Females in the introduction group exhibited significantly higher rates of both affiliative, and agonistic behavior over their male introduction, and semi-wild counterparts. These findings suggest that rehabilitant vervets show stress patterns typically seen in wild vervets, and that female vervets experience heightened levels of behavioral variation. Despite introduction males having slightly higher cortisol rates, no significant difference was found in glucocorticoid expression among the groups. No other variables interacted significantly with cortisol rates.

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Biology Commons