There will always be something new to learn about chimpanzees. 2015 marked 55 years since Jane first arrived at what has become the Gombe Stream Research Center to begin her research, and the world has learned so much from what she has discovered in that time.
Just in this last year, Gombe scientists have produced over 15 publications. Researchers have employed new non-invasive methods of examining chimpanzee health, investigated the effects of maternal stress on infants, and further examined the impacts of Simian Immunodeficiency Virus on chimps. We have used satellite imagery and GIS technology to aid in great ape conservation, constructing maps that allow us to examine habitat suitability. The more we learn about these creatures — their behavior, their habitats, what threatens their survival — the better able we are to protect them.
named chimps in Kasekela and Mitumba communities
fecal samples for DNA analysis and disease monitoring
days of B-record follows in the database, spanning the period from 1973 (Jan) - 2014 (Nov)
hours focal follows span
Gombe Kasekela Families
To celebrate the milestone of 55 years, Jane looked back on her life’s work, reflecting on the origins of her life’s work and how it has grown and changed over the years. “The research center grew gradually,” she said. “Initially we lived in tents. Then the National Geographic Society funded the construction of some prefab aluminum buildings – known as uniports. Thus was the research “center” founded.”
Gombe has certainly come a long way from those early days. Because of Jane, we have learned that chimpanzees are intelligent, social and resourceful animals, which can almost feel human at times. We hope that the research at Gombe continues for another 55 years, carrying on Jane’s legacy of curiosity and determination and kindness towards our closest relatives.
Gombe Over the Years
Photo credits on this page, top to bottom and left to right: Judy Goodall; Hugo van Lawick; Jane Goodall; Michael Neugebauer; JGI/Chase Pickering