science
Toddlers and Chimpanzees Share a Surprising Unspoken Language

Prior to developing the capacity for speech, toddlers communicate their desires, demands, and discontent using a diverse repertoire of physical gestures. As a new study shows, there’s a significant amount of overlap between the gestures employed by human children and those made by other ape species, a finding that’s casting new light on the origin of primate communication. Read More >>

science
Here’s How an Absurd Primate Ended Up With Squirrel Teeth

The aye-aye is about as ridiculous looking as a primate can get: beady yellow eyes, bat-like ears, and hands like horrible spiders. But perhaps its most interesting feature is its teeth. Read More >>

science
Scientists Have Finally Figured Out Why Chimps Are So Damn Strong

Humans may have big, bulbous brains, but when it comes to pure muscle power, we’re often considered the weakest of the great apes. Even chimpanzees, who are significantly smaller than us, exhibit levels of strength that are practically super-human by our standards. New research shows the degree to which our primate cousins are stronger than us—and why their tiny bodies pack such an impressive punch. Read More >>

science
Monkeys Learn to Pass a Classic Test For Self-Awareness

The ability to look into a mirror and recognise oneself is a cognitive skill we all take for granted, but very few animals outside of humans are able to do it. New research shows that monkeys can be trained to pass the so-called “mirror test”, suggesting that more species may be self-aware than previously thought. It’s a fascinating result, but one that shows how far we are from being able to accurate gauge consciousness in another animal. Read More >>

science
This Simulation of a Monkey Speaking Is the Stuff of Nightmares

New research shows that macaques have a vocal tract capable of emitting human-like speech, but they lack the brain circuitry to make words happen. That may be a good thing, because their simulated speech is creepy as hell. Read More >>

animals
How Did This Escaped Chimp Not Get Zapped Into Oblivion?

In a scene eerily reminiscent of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, an escaped chimpanzee sought refuge on the power lines of a Japanese suburb. The chimp was eventually subdued after a frantic two-hour police chase, but you have to wonder: why didn’t he get zapped by the power lines? Here’s the answer. Read More >>

science
A Wild Female and Male Orangutan Teamed Up To Murder Another Orangutan

Anthropologists in Borneo observed a rare instance of a female and a male orangutan teaming up—to kill another female orangutan. This is the first observed time a female-female conflict in orangutans has turned lethal, and the way the it went down changes what we thought we knew about orangutan behaviour. Read More >>

science
Humans Sleep a Lot Less Than Any Other Primate

Forget studies that show that we are lazy, fried cheese-fed, cubicle dwellers. Or, at least forget the “lazy” part. Out of all the primates, humans distinguish themselves by getting the least amount of sleep. Read More >>

science
Anthropologists Have Discovered a Totally New Human Ancestor

There’s a new branch on the human family tree. Anthropologists say they’ve found a new human ancestor, who lived 3.5 million years ago, right beside Australopithecus afarensis on the plains of what is now Ethiopia. Read More >>

science
Scientists Have Found the Oldest Primate Skeleton Ever

Today's smallest primate, the pygmy mouse lemur, can reach up to about 5 inches in height — and that's even on the larger side. But the primate skeleton that researchers just uncovered, the oldest ever found on record, stood even smaller than our pygmy friend as it scampered around the earth — a whole 55 million years ago. Read More >>