If I was an old world monkey, I would choose my social grooming targets carefully and in accordance with my life-defining mantra of minimal effort for a suitable reward. Would I choose the baboons with the broadest backs or the thickest pelts? The tallest, strongest baboons? The baboon who is richly nippled with billions of bloated bugs begging to be my protein shake?
Would I seek groups of baboons, loads of them, all to be groomed by my skilled fingers and teeth, one after another in a merry go round of blissful bug squeezing, popping, and biting – all to sate my unending hunger? The work! The effort to peel so many ticks from so many broad backs! All for the potential return of altruism and the honey of bug guts?
I doubt it.
I would seek the smaller backs, the more manageable plots of monkey fur, just enough to make my connections, feed myself and call it a day. I’d leave the large pelts and group pickings to my more industrial brothers and sisters, the ones with the technology and patience to comb all day and all night.
The moral my friends! The moral…
Plant yourself a smallish garden cuz it’s easier to pick the freaking bugs off of the damn leaves. Too many plants means too many bugs and too much popping of beetles. In this case… three lined potato beetles.