Photo of Geladas in mid-grooming

Like other intelligent, highly social primates, baboon courtship can take many different forms. In hamadryas baboons, for instance, males will maintain harems of multiple females which they will jealously guard—and which will occasionally be raided by other males. Males of other baboon species sometimes take a different tack: by “befriending” a female through attentive companionship and grooming (the primate equivalent of sparkling conversation) they may eventually be chosen as mates by those females.

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