In his latest blog entry, Dr. Deus Mjungu, Gombe Stream Research Center’s director of chimpanzee research, writes of tracking two chimpanzees at Gombe National Park.
Young chimps learn how to use tools from watching and imitating others.
This is the story of Mugu Moja, a juvenile chimpanzee who is getting a fresh start in Uganda’s forest after JGI rescued her from a steel jaw trap. Over the past five years, JGI-Uganda has successfully freed and provided medical attention to 18 chimpanzees injured by steel jaw traps and snares—a 100 percent success rate for each chimpanzee intervention conducted since 2007!
Help Us Save Chimps From These Traps - www.janegoodall.org/snare
Because chimpanzees are so biologically and socially similar to humans, they offer us a great deal of insights into our evolutionary past, as well as into our future. As we observe and document the world of chimpanzees, we learn more about our own behaviors and social patterns, our impact on the ecosystem, and even our ability to spread disease.
10 Things to Know About Chimpanzees
- Chimpanzees are one of our closest living relatives. In fact, humans and chimpanzees share 95 to 98 percent of the same DNA!
- Chimpanzees make and use tools. In fact, they use more tools for more purposes than any other creature except human beings. Visit the video page to watch videos of tool use at Gombe National Park in Tanzania.
Raising awareness is a powerful means
We stand on the threshold of a future without chimpanzees in the wild.
The IUCN/World Conservation Union Red List of Threatened Species says each of the species of African great apes – chimpanzees, gorillas, and bonobos – as endangered. African apes are largely confined to the relatively intact forests of Equatorial Africa as their last remaining stronghold. Chimpanzees are likely extinct in 4 of their 25 range countries (Gambia, Burkina Faso, Togo and Benin).
Chimpanzees communicate in many ways, most notably through sounds and calls. They also communicate with each other through touch, facial expressions and body language.
- Biologically, chimpanzees are more closely related to humans than they are to another species of great apes—gorillas. In fact, humans and chimpanzees share about 95 percent to 98 percent of the same DNA.
- Chimpanzees can catch and be infected with human diseases. Read more on this topic.
- In the wild, chimpanzees seldom live past age 50. Some captive individuals, however, have lived past the age of 60.