Demand and supply factors work on monkeys too

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London, Jan 3 (UNI) A rich old man getting an attractive lass is too common, but a recent study says market forces influence the mating behaviour in monkeys too.

According to the research, male macaque monkeys pay for sex with females by grooming them. Depending on the availability of females, the ''price'' varies.

In case of fewer female monkeys, male monkeys groom their partners for up to twice as long before they are able to have sex, the research published in ''Animal Behaviour'' said.

A male monkey would have to do only eight minutes of grooming if there were several females in the area, while for fewer females, the time would up to 16 minutes before sex, the research added.

Observing a 50-strong group of long-tailed macaques in Indonesia, it was found that sexual activity among females increased more than two folds after bouts of male-to-female grooming, the Daily Telegraph reported here today.

The value of sex has fluctuated like any other economic commodity, Michael Gumert of Singapore's Nanyang Technological University said.

''There is a very well-known mix of economic and mating markets in the human species,'' said Professor Ronald Noe of the Strasbourbg University, France, who developed a theory ''biological market''.

UNI XC SG DB1124

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