The Monkeys are Arming Themselves

Female Chimps Seen Making, Wielding Spears
They are coming at us to get our bananas: Female Chimps Seen Making, Wielding Spears. (and I know chimps are not monkeys)

They are not just picking up long sticks that happen to be spear-like:

"The tools (spears) are made from living tree branches that are detached and then modified by removing all the side branches and leaves, as well as the flimsy terminal end of the branch," lead author Jill Pruetz told Discovery News.

Scientists are studying this chimp tribe because they think their living conditions might be similar to conditions early humans had to deal with so the chimps could be behaving much like our ancestors did when we first picked up weapon use.

"Vertebrate prey are less readily available to chimpanzees in Fongoli than they are at other, more forested sites, so the Fongoli chimpanzees got inventive and came up with a way -- that is, a weapon -- to ensure greater hunting success," he explained, adding that bushbabies bite when attacked, so the spear creates a safe distance between the hunter and the bushbaby's teeth.

Pretty cool stuff.

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Page last modified on April 20, 2015
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