Do animals have choices or just instincts

Biological roots in human sexual behavior

Most of the basic behavior patterns we have in common with the animal primates, especially with the great apes. Primates are very eye-catching animals, although with them the smell, also the specific of the sexes, still plays a major role. Therefore, the key sexual stimuli in the form of secondary sexual characteristics, facial expressions and gestures are primarily of an optical nature. We can see every day that we too have innate trigger mechanisms for this, also in advertising.

Sexual activity proceeds from both sexes in the animal primates, and many cultures show, as has recently been the case with us, that this also applies to humans if it is not suppressed early on in the female sex through upbringing.

Advertising is not very expensive for chimpanzees and not necessary for gorillas because of their social structure. The typical demeanor of male gorillas and chimpanzees towards male competitors and females finds its counterpart in quite a few men, depending on age and social status, and can be similarly “primitive” (brawling, noise from howling of the engine, etc.). But humans have the possibility of very cultivated advertising: by emphasizing the attractiveness through clothing (including deception), through symbols of social status, language, art and music.

The fact that the selection is then actually made by the female sex has a deep biological meaning: the female animal as well as the woman have a much higher physical and emotional investment to make when it comes to the offspring, and that means for them to pay great attention to who is well or better suited to be the father of the children with their genes and / or social position. This is what the curling and the "brittleness behavior" serve. The woman's choice between “good genes” and good care can certainly lead to conflicts. The great apes in particular, like humans, do not act purely instinctively, but also show individual preferences, aversions and rejections towards certain conspecifics in their sexual behavior.

The primates are the animal group with the most extensive and longest lasting learning behavior, the childhood of the great apes lasts around eight years and they only reach social maturity a few years after puberty. Pubescent females and males and adults differ in their behavior and, in an astonishing way, correspond to the human role cliché, which we call “typically male” and “typically female”. Even the mating behavior and the successful rearing of the child have to be learned.

Much of the differentiated and complex social and sexual behavior of the animal primates can only be described in human terms. They have the corresponding skills for mutual understanding, affection, disregard, rivalry, jealousy and aggressiveness, they can sulk, etc. There are so-called morally analogous behavior as well as violations of the group code according to the motto “just don't get caught”, such as secret ones because pairings are not allowed, penalties if a group member has broken the rules and tactical behavior with trickery, seeming not to look, and pretending.