Link: Female chimpanzee hunting at Fongoli

less than 1 minute read

James Gorman of the New York Times has an article today about the long-term field research on hunting by the chimpanzees at Fongoli, Senegal.

The Fongoli chimps find the bush babies in their dens in trees. Chimps will stab and poke one of the small animals, sometimes wounding but not impaling it, until it comes out of its hiding place. The chimps will grab it, Dr. Pruetz said, and immediately “bite the head off.”
Females, even those with infants, and juvenile chimps can do this kind of hunting. The process does not put a premium on speed and strength as the chase does, so big males do not have an advantage. But there is more than technique and technology involved. There is social change.

Last year for my MOOC, I interviewed Jill Pruetz about her work at Fongoli. There are many interviews with her online, but this one really digs into the details of female hunting, the unique savanna setting of the Fongoli group, and the ways that chimpanzees use water in this seasonal environment.

It is a great interview, and like many of my other videos available on my YouTube channel.