Dr. Goodall started her study of chimpanzees in 1960, very little
was known about their behavior in the wild. Since then, studies
analyzing almost every aspect of chimpanzees’ multifaceted
behavior have sprung up across Africa. In the years since Dr.
Goodall began, scientists have reaped a bounty of data from chimpanzee
study sites, yielding new insights not only into chimpanzee culture,
but into our own culture as well.
Chimpanzees culture is much like human culture: groups in different
areas share different cultures. Tool-making is a good example
of this variation. Chimpanzees in Gombe use long twigs and alter
them for better termite fishing while chimpanzees of the Tai Forest
in Cote d'Ivoire are more often seen nut-cracking with rocks and
planed surfaces. Even chimpanzees living in separated areas in
the same countries will exhibit different cultures and behaviors.
But what kind of behaviors do most sub-species and groups of
chimpanzees share? General behaviors like group structuring, communication,
and hunting practices are often common from chimpanzee group to
chimpanzee group, and even these factors are never constant! Click
here to find out more about the fascinating behaviors of chimpanzees!