Orangutans Learn Tool Use Through Social Observation

Orangutans Learn Using Tools Through Social Observation

A new study concludes that even very young Sumatran orangutans (Pongo abelii) start forming ideas about their world, and how and when to use certain tools. Ape cultural traditions might not be very different from the cultural traditions of humans.

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Area of Monkey Brain Keeps Tally of Altruistic Acts


Steve Chang and his colleagues from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, have discovered that monkeys have a specific area in their brains to keep track of altruistic acts. This might help researchers understand the mechanisms underlying normal social behavior in primates and humans, and could even provide insight about autism spectrum disorder.

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Kayan Loris, A Newly Discovered Species of Slow Loris


The primate genus Nycticebus contains a group called slow lorises, which is closely related to lemurs, and can be found across South East Asia. Recently, biologists discovered a new species in the jungles of Borneo.

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Survey Shows Great Apes Also Have Mid-Life Crisis


Chimpanzees and orangutans experience a mid-life crisis just like humans, according to a survey of 508 great apes in captivity shows.

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Cooking Fueled the Growth of the Human Brain


A new study has calculated the energetic cost of growing a bigger brain. If humans had been eating a raw food diet exclusively, they would have had to spend more than 9 hours a day eating in order to get enough energy from unprocessed raw food alone to support their large brains.

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Baboons with Stable Relationships are Nicer and Live Longer


In humans, people with strong social ties live longer, have healthier lives, whereas hostile tendencies can lead to an early death. In animals, this seems to be the case as well. Strong social networks contribute to longer lives and healthier offspring. Personality might also be a factor in other primates’ longevity.

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Helium Reveals Gibbons’ Developed & Far Ranging Vocalizations


Gibbons have mastered some of the vocal techniques that are akin to what human sopranos rely on whilst delivering their operas. Japanese scientists have been researching them and testing their vocalizations in helium rich atmospheres.

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World’s Smallest Primate Issues High-Frequency Calls Like Bats


It was recently discovered by a team of scientists that the Philippine tarsier (Tarsius syrichta) can communicate in pure ultrasound, issuing calls that are so high-pitched that human ears cannot perceive them. The huge-eyed tarsier definitely has arresting looks.

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Bonobo Great Apes are Domesticating Themselves


While it’s expected that the animal kingdom is a fierce place, where aggression for survival dominates, a new study on bonobos (Pan paniscus) published in January 20th’s Animal Behaviour suggests that some animals outcompete others by becoming ‘nicer’.

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Western Lowland Gorillas Exhibit Human-Like Expressions but They Mean Different Things


Gorillas use human-life facial expressions to communicate with each other, however the Western Lowland gorilla equivalent of a grin means something completely different, as psychologists from the University of Portsmouth recently discovered.

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