Weaning across primates: A hominid blueprint for weaning
Sinclair, Margaret. 2016. Weaning across primates: A hominid blueprint for weaning -- Lambda Alpha Journal, v.46, p.100-119
To determine a possible "natural" weaning age for humans I will statistically examine four life-history parameters as discussed by Dettwyler 1995: 1) Birth weight to weaning weight ratio, 2) Percentage of adult weight, 3) Length of gestation to weaning age rate and 4) Age at eruption of the first permanent molar. Firstly, I will examine which of these four life-history parameters is the best indicator of age or weaning. Secondly, I will attempt to determine if the best indicator of weaning age is appropriate to predict human weaning age. Using the most effective life history parameter I will then determine if there is a "natural" age for weaning human infants and if so, how off course is the current weaning age from our "Hominid blueprint."