Monday, 3 May 2010

What we can learn from Bonobo monkeys (Part 1 of 5)


Research published in 2005 confirmed close similarities between the human genetic structure and that of Bonobo monkeys. Many differences exist between the two species, but pure statistical comparison reveals a 98% commonality in DNA sequences.

Ongoing experiments in the United States of America have shown the Bonobos' capacity to memorize words and use primitive tools. Tests show that, with sustained training, these animals can equal the linguistic abilities of a two-year-old human child.

Interesting as this research may be, the question is whether we can learn something from Bonobo monkeys. Ape enthusiasts have pointed out how peaceful these animals are, but facts contradict this conclusion: Bonobos are known to behave violently on some occasions. Their society cannot be portrayed as free of aggression.

Those who promote vegetarianism amongst humans by pointing at the Bonobos' diet also lack scientific evidence. Observation in their natural habitat has shown these apes eating not only fruit, but also smaller animals such as flying squirrels.

To be continued in Part 2

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by John-Morgan under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]

What we can learn from Bonobo monkeys
(Part 1 of 5)


Research published in 2005 confirmed close similarities between the human genetic structure and that of Bonobo monkeys. Many differences exist between the two species, but pure statistical comparison reveals a 98% commonality in DNA sequences.

Ongoing experiments in the United States of America have shown the Bonobos' capacity to memorize words and use primitive tools. Tests show that, with sustained training, these animals can equal the linguistic abilities of a two-year-old human child.

Interesting as this research may be, the question is whether we can learn something from Bonobo monkeys. Ape enthusiasts have pointed out how peaceful these animals are, but facts contradict this conclusion: Bonobos are known to behave violently on some occasions. Their society cannot be portrayed as free of aggression.

Those who promote vegetarianism amongst humans by pointing at the Bonobos' diet also lack scientific evidence. Observation in their natural habitat has shown these apes eating not only fruit, but also smaller animals such as flying squirrels.

To be continued in Part 2

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by John-Morgan under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]