Wednesday, 5 May 2010

What we can learn from Bonobo monkeys (Part 3 of 5)

We do not know yet what makes them walk sometimes upright and otherwise on all fours. The logical conclusion might be that, to a certain extent, Bonobos are able to allocate their physical resources to match the situation.

Similarly, observers in Central Africa have noted how Bonobo monkeys split in groups to look for food more efficiently. The drive to optimize resource allocation, which is intense in human beings, seems to be a characteristic that we share with Bonobos.

[2] Marks of individuality: the facial features of each Bonobo are highly differentiated, as it is the case in humans. Each monkey is unique and can be distinguished from other members of the species. On the other hand, research fails to show evidence of personality in apes to an extent that could be compared with complex human traits.

The individuality of Bonobos is linked to their particular family and group. Incestuous relationships do not take place and intruders from other groups are rejected. For humans, our uniqueness encompasses psychological aspects, convictions, and personal interests. In both cases, human and ape, attempts to ignore individual traits generate distress.

To be continued in Part 4


[Image by Simon Doggett under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under]