Allison Lau

Graduate Student in Animal Behavior, UC Davis

My interest in primate behavior and socioecology began my first quarter as an undergraduate at UC Davis in a primate comparative life history course. As an undergraduate, I studied the social behavior of multiple primate species under both Dr. Lynne Isbell and Dr. Meg Crofoot. I thoroughly enjoyed studying activity budgets in baboons, song in gibbons, alarm calling in vervet monkeys, and foraging strategies in rhesus macaques. Studying these questions motivated me to expand my knowledge in the field. This led me to a summer recording the bioacoustics of monogamous gibbons in Southeast Asia, funded generously by the UC Davis Provost Undergraduate Fellowship and Explorer’s Club. Through this work, we discovered that male gibbons do not have the same vocal individuality and stability seen in female Bornean gibbons.

After I graduated from UC Davis with a B.S. in Evolution, Ecology, and Biodiversity in 2017, I worked under Dr. Melissa Bauman on the Conte Center’s Maternal Immune Activation model of ASD and Schizophrenia. During my time at the California National Primate Research Center, I learned the value of translational research in furthering human health and expanded my skills in the captive setting. As a graduate student in the Animal Behavior Graduate Group (ABGG), I plan to expand my fascination of non-human primate social behavior to the coppery titi monkeys in Dr. Karen Bales’ Comparative Monogamy lab. My research interests include bioacoustics, parenting and pair-bond variation, cognition, and captive animal welfare.

In my spare time, I am an editor for the ABGG’s scientific blog, The Ethogram. I also teach 1 st and 2 nd graders in Yolo County about nature and environmental sustainability as the current Director for Sprout Up at UC Davis.

Please reach out at for any questions or research opportunity inquires.

Lau, A. R., Clink, D. J., Crofoot, M. C., & Marshall, A. J. (2018). Evidence for High Variability in Temporal Features of the Male Coda in Müller’s Bornean Gibbons (Hylobates muelleri). International Journal of Primatology, 39(4), 670-684.