The Wildlife Conservation Society announced Sunday at the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Hawaii that the world's largest great ape, the Grauer's gorilla (Gorilla beringei graueri), is now considered as "Critically Endangered" on IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Researchers recently took a second look at the genome of gorillas to acquire fresh insight on their similarities and differences with us.
When it comes to solving problems, kids and wild great apes will spontaneously invent similar tools. For instance, when given a stick, young children will use it to retrieve Play Doh balls stuck inside a tube, much like apes use sticks to reach insects at the bottom of a hole. This discovery counters previous beliefs suggesting such tool use requires social learning.
Newly discovered fossils suggest human lineages diverged from gorilla ancestors two million years earlier than previously thought. After dating the remains, researchers say they indicate that apes, and therefore humans, originated in Africa, not Eurasia.
A new fossil species suggests that great apes, including humans, evolved differently from smaller "lesser" apes than researchers previously surmised.
Here's some unsettling news: new chimpanzee and neuroscience research is reinforcing the theory that our personalities are, in no small way, dictated by the structures of our brains. That is to say, we may choose how we act, but nature (not nurture) is deciding who we are in the most fundamental way.
A recent study observed the reproduction success of male orangutans. They found that females are more attracted to males with padded cheeks.
It's no secret that compared to other animals, great apes are leaps and bounds ahead in terms of language development. The complex and varied call dialects chimpanzees exhibit, alongside the impressive sign language abilities of gorillas has shown us as much. But how close are they to developing a verbal language like ours? A new study of Koko the gorilla has found that great apes are closer than ever imagined.
It turns out that the unusual great apes of Africa known as bonobos might be better at understand a baby's babble than even her own mother. A new study has revealed that these primal relatives of humanity communicate much like babies, hinting that they might be on an evolutionary fast-track to complex language development.
It's official! The chimpanzee is a fully protected species in the United States regardless of whether it is a captive or wild animal. And that's good news for humanity's closest primate relative, as it means that all chimps in US labs will be 'retiring' from the exhausting (and arguably maddening) world of research.
We've been told since we were in grade school (probably before) to "look both ways before crossing the street." However, it probably took a while before we remembered to do this. Chimpanzees, it seems, don't need to be reminded, as these wild animals have been observed taking the appropriate precautions all on their own when crossing many of Africa's new roadways.
It's no secret that animals occasionally get high and drunk off the many vices nature has to offer. However, intentionally doing so has always seemed a strictly human affair. Now more and more evidence is piling up that suggests wild animals enjoy a good buzz as much as the next guy, and may even have their fair share of junkies - an idea that experts are now fiercely debating.
Chimpanzees are apparently pretty proficient linguists - probably far more so than most humans can call themselves. Researchers have unveiled evidence that these clever great apes can even adapt to a new dialect or language depending on where they are, picking up new names for things after moving to a new region.
A year into West Africa's Ebola epidemic, the WHO has reported more than 7,500 deaths and nearly 20,000 confirmed cases among humans. And while it's understandable why the media has focused on these tragic numbers, some researchers are saying that we're missing something equally tragic: nearly a third of the world's gorillas and chimpanzees have died from Ebola since the 1990s.
It's no secret that chimpanzees and a few other great apes are capable of complex language. They can be taught sign language and freely communicate with experts using body language. But what about us understanding them? A new team of researchers eavesdropping on the animals have now determined that chimps talk to one another about at least two important topics.