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Carl J. Erickson, Professor Emeritus of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Carl J. Erickson
Contact Info:
Office Location:  242 Soc Psych, Durham, NC 27708
Office Phone:  (919) 660-5673
Email Address:   send me a message
Web Page:  


Postdoctoral Fellow (1965-1966)University of Groningen, The Netherlands1966
Ph.D.Rutgers University1965
No degreeHarvard University1961
B.A.Clark University1959
Fitchburg, Massachusetts Public Schools
Research Interests: Animal Behavior

The aye-aye is one of the world's most endangered animals Its unusual foraging behavior presents a provocative challenge to those interested in the evolution, development and sensory-motor coordination of complex behavior as well as to those concerned wi th the captive breeding of endangered species. The aye-aye hunts for woodboring insect larvae by tapping its middle finger on the surface of dead trees. When a cavity is detected, it uses its razor-sharp incisors to gnaw away the wood. Our studies have focused on the aye-aye's capacity to form representations of the subsurface cavities and to exploit them most efficiently. Because of our successful breeding program, Duke has the largest colony of captive-bred aye-ayes in the world. This program has allowed us a unique opportunity to study the early development of the aye-aye's complex behavior patterns. Ultimately, this research is critical to the reintroduction of this species to protected areas of Madagascar.

Recent Publications   (More Publications)   (search)

  1. Erickson, CJ (1998). Cues for prey location by aye-ayes (Daubentonia madagascariensis). Folia Primatologica, 69(SUPPL. 1), 35-40. [Gateway.cgi], [doi]
  2. Erickson, CJ; Nowicki, S; Dollar, L; Goehring, N (1998). Percussive foraging: Stimuli for prey location by aye-ayes (Daubentonia madagascariensis). International Journal of Primatology, 19(1), 111-122.  [abs]
  3. Erickson, C; Nowicki, S; Dollar, L; Goehring, N (1998). Percussive Foraging: Stimuli for Prey Location by Aye-Ayes. (Daubentonia madagascariensis) International Journal of Primatology, 19, 111-122.
  4. Erickson, C (1998). Cues for Prey Location by Aye-Aye. Daubentonia Madagascariensis, Folia Pimatologica, 69 (suppl), 35-40.
  5. Erickson, CJ (1995). Sociopathy and sociobiology: Biological units and behavioral units. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 18(3), 555. (A commentary on L. Mealey's "The Sociobiology of Sociopathy: An Integrated Evolutionary Model"). [Gateway.cgi], [doi]  [abs]

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