Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes)
Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) are great apes that live in tropical forests and woodland savannahs across central and west Africa. The common Chimpanzee is a distinctive black-coated ape that’s more closely related to man than to any other living creature, sharing 98.7 percent of our genetic blueprint. Science research also strongly suggests we share a common ancestor.
A chimp has long arms with opposable thumbs; hair color brown to black; adults similar in size to adolescent humans. At standing height, a male chimp grows up to 1.2 m (4 ft.) and weighs 60 kg (132 lbs.), and a female grows up to 1.1 m (3.5 ft.) and weighs 47 kg (103.6 lbs.).
Social Structure of Chimpanzee
Chimpanzees live in a large, loosely bonded ‘community’ (called a band or troop) based around a core of related males with an internal hierarchy topped by an alpha male. Females are generally less strongly bonded to their core group than are males, which means emigration between communities is very common.
Chimpanzee troops are made up of around 15 to 80 members. Within their communities, chimps sleep, travel, and feed in smaller sub-groups of up to ten. These sub-groups can be very flexible, with members changing quickly and regularly.
Mother—child bonds are strong. Daughters typically leave their mother only after they reach maturity, at which they may break relations between them. Mother—son relations have survived for over 40 years.
A troop has a well-defined core territory which is fiercely defended by regular boundary patrols.
Chimpanzees are experts at grooming and spend a lot of their time running their fingers through each other’s hair to remove dirt, pesky parasites, and dead skin. Grooming is an essential activity for social bonding – it not only keeps them clean but helps them build friendships and strengthen bonds with each other, too.