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... Chimpanzees, for example, alter their grouping and vocalizations in order to evade human detection whilst raiding croplands or entering areas potentially occupied by hunters. Now, unlike a deer stuck in headlights, it seems that wild chimps are beginning to realize the importance of crossing roads safely, as scientists have observed them implementing similar safety precautions to us, such as looking both ways for oncoming traffic.
... two and a half years observing them around a road crossing in Kibale National Park, Uganda. During this time, they witnessed 122 individual crossings of this hazardous road, which is used by almost 90 vehicles an hour, whizzing along at speeds of up to 60 mph (100 kph). But although this road represents a serious risk to the chimps, the researchers found that they took this into account when crossing and exhibited both vigilance and caution.
More than 90% of the animals looked both ways before and during crossing, and many even stood up in a bipedal posture to check for traffic and reduce the risk of being hit, the researchers report in the American Journal of Primatology. Additionally, more than 55% of them ran across the road, demonstrating that they realize the importance of getting to the other side as soon as possible, and almost 20% paid attention to others whilst crossing, either checking on them or waiting for them.
Interestingly, the researchers also observed that the behavior of chimps in this area was different to those observed crossing roads in Bossou, Guinea. For example, during this investigation, chimps tended to split into small subgroups of usually two individuals when crossing, but in Boussou they generally all crossed together in a line. The researchers hypothesize that this could be because the road in Kibale National Park is significantly busier and more hazardous than the one in Boussou, so the chimps are forced to adopt a different strategy to make sure they stay safe.
A troop of chimpanzees in southeastern Senegal are proving to be a continued source of surprise and amazement for primatologists. Not only do members forge weapons to hunt, making them the only known group to use tools to injure or kill prey, but it turns out that females actually engage in this behavior more than males. This could mean that, unexpectedly, female chimps pioneered tool use for hunting, and that the first weapon-yielding early humans could have also been females. The research has been published in Royal Society Open Science.
Back in 2007, whilst observing a group of savanna chimps in Fongoli, Senegal, Iowa State University anthropologist Jill Pruetz spotted something that had never before been observed: individuals were making sharp spears and using them to hunt vertebrate prey. But that wasn’t the only thing that stood out, as Preutz also noticed that more females were engaging in this behavior than males. At the time, she and her research team did not have enough data to be able to assert that it was indeed more common in females, so they continued to follow the animals for the next seven years.
During this time, the scientists observed troop members snapping off branches, removing the leaves and even using their teeth to trim and sharpen the ends. On average, these tools were around 75 centimeters (30 inches) in length. Weapon in hand, the chimps would then creep up on sleeping bush babies and stab them, either mortally or wounding them enough to make them easy to snatch and kill with hands and teeth.
Throughout the duration of the study, the team observed more than 300 tool-assisted hunts, 175 of which were performed by females. Given the fact that hunting groups were male dominated, with females usually only making up 40% of the members, males were significantly less likely to hunt than females, carrying out only 39% of the hunts. This was surprising since male chimpanzees hunt more than females in general, and within this group they also accounted for the vast majority of all captures.
The fact that no other chimp groups are known to engage in this behavior is also extremely interesting. The researchers propose this may have something to do with the limited supply of vertebrate prey in the area, which could have encouraged them to become more inventive in order to meet their nutritional needs.
originally posted by: strongfp
a reply to: AllSourceIntel
The real test is to observe if younger generations are taught the skill of spear crafting. Intelligence needs two key variables to progress, creativity (imagination) and the ability to teach the young and pass on skills and traditions.
Chimps look out for traffic and make hunting spears
Is it beginning?