Sunday, February 25, 2007

Chimps Observed Creating and Using Spears for Hunting

Two articles appeared recently in online publications that described spear creation and use by chimpanzees.

One article, written by Carrie McLaren, appeared in Monkeywire (a monkey news blog).

The other article, written by William Saletan, appeared in Slate Magazine.

The articles describe the same discovery - that chimps in the Fongoli area of south-east Senegal have been breaking off branches, sharpening them into points with their teeth, and then using them to kill and eat bushbabies, which are small primates.

These activities involve advanced mental processes that were previously thought to be found only in humans.

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