Day 115: Jane Goodall- What separates us from chimpanzees?

Jane Goodall introduces her conversation about chimpanzees in the way she does most talks; with their greeting. The legendary conservationist began to study man’s closest relative in Gombe, Tanzania in 1960, learning more than anybody before about the apes.
Study of the chimps has evolved since Goodall began.Now we can look at deforestation using satellite imagery, study baby chimps’ DNA to work out their parentage and watch a 28 year old captive chimp work a computer.
Some of Goodall’s own most groundbreaking research included learning that chimps use tools. In Gombe alone, they have 9 different tools for various purposes. Like humans, they have a long childhood; five years of suckling with their mother, followed by a period of growth when they are allowed to make adolescent mistakes. They kiss, embrace and pat each other on the back.
But chimps are disappearing at a fast rate, mostly due to activities of man. This is yet another story resulting from our destructive actions on the planet. When she realised this, Goodall set up the program, ‘Roots and Shoots’ in Tanzania, with the aim of educating children that everyone can make a difference. We are the ones to do it. Buying ethical produce, leaving the lightest possible footprints and talking about the problems of the world can lead to positive change.


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