Thursday, 6 May 2010

What we can learn from Bonobo monkeys (Part 4 of 5)

[3] Avoiding unnecessary effort: Bonobos eat mostly plants and fruits available in the area they inhabit in Central Africa. Hunting, which demands much more effort than foraging, plays an exceptional role. When these apes go after smaller animals, they focus on preys that can be easily caught and quickly eaten up.

Bonobo monkeys hunt above all flying squirrels and small forest antelopes. Preys are eaten up immediately after caught. Such violent behaviour is relatively uncommon for these apes, since they can obtain proteins more easily by eating haumania, a plant that grows in Central Africa.

In humans, the tendency to spare unnecessary effort seems to be linked to individual motivation. Long-term productivity gains demand levels of thoughtfulness, patience, and personal involvement that not every person is willing to contribute. However, the general inclination to avoid waste is present in all men.

[4] Adoption of measures that further self-protection: Bonobo monkeys build nests in trees where they retire to sleep at night. In their natural environment in Central Africa, this protective measure proves highly effective against predators. In addition, Bonobos protect their territory against intruders from other groups. These apes tend to react to problems by acquiring stable habits that consolidate improvements.

To be continued in Part 5


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