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originally posted by: Kratos40
originally posted by: purplemer
a reply to: peskyhumans
I do wonder too if it is being used for a tool still and that we just cannot see what it is... But I would give the scientists some credence they have been studying them for four years....
I wonder if one the researchers who was observing them was wearing long earrings? They could have picked up the idea from there.
originally posted by: peskyhumans
I don't think much of these scientists. One look at the first picture and I suspect it's to help them tell wind direction - the wind blows on the grass and they feel it in their ear. It's probably a lot more sensitive than their fur, allowing them to sense minor changes in the breeze. This would let them know what direction to sneak up on prey, and which way to run if they are being hunted (wind carries scent).
In the decades that followed, researchers observed that orangutans also used tools. For example, they used leaves and sticks to handle and open prickly fruit, and crafted leaves into rain hats. In some ways, such observations weren't a surprise. Zookeepers had long taught captive orangutans to hammer nails and to use keys or screwdrivers.
In the mid-1990s, a team led by biologist Carel van Schaik of Duke University watched Sumatran orangutans use specially prepared sticks to pry termites, ants, and other insects from colonies high up in trees. The apes also used the sticks to collect honey and then eat it as if it were on a lollipop.