The Price of Power

Being the Big Baboon on Campus is a Stressful Business

In the hardscrabble world of a baboon troop, being the alpha male has its perks: power, food, ample opportunities to woo the ladies. But all that status brings with it a great deal of stress, a new study shows, as the alpha male constantly scrambles to stay atop the social pyramid. The life of a second-in-command beta male — somewhat fewer perks but, the researchers found, a whole lot less stress — is starting to sound like the better deal.

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