A small but definite spurt occurs in head length and breadth, but all or most of this is due to thickening of the skull bones and the scalp, together with development of the air sinuses. The size attained by various tissues can be given as a percentage of the birth-to-maturity increment. The reproductive organs, internal and external, have a slow prepubescent growth, followed by a large adolescent spurt; they are less sensitive than the skeleton to one set of hormones and more sensitive to another. As always in growth, there are considerable individual differences, to the point that a few children have no detectable spurt at all in some face measurements. Such adolescent changes occur generally in primates that is, men, apes, and monkeys but are more marked in some species than in others. These changes all specifically adapt the male to his primitive primate role of dominating, fighting, and foraging. Graphs of the amounts of subcutaneous fat on males and females from birth to 16 years revealed that from eight years on, the curves for girls and boys diverge more radically, as do the curves for limb and body fat.
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