Chimps in Your Living Room

The documentary "Miss Goodall and the Wild Chimpanzees" first aired on U.S. television on this date in 1965. The film brought widespread acclaim to British primatologist Jane Goodall and a better appreciation of the similarities between humans and chimps, the closest living species to our own. Goodall's research on chimps at the Gombe Reserve in East Africa showed that they were not strict vegetarians, as had been suggested previously, but hunted and sometimes practiced cannibalism. Goodall was the first to report on chimps using tools--blades of grass that the chimps fashioned into implements for scooping termites out of mounds and into their mouths. She also introduced the public to chimps that hurled stones as weapons, comforted each another with hugs, and forged long-term family bonds.

[Source: Emily McMurray, Ed. Notable Twentieth Century Scientists. Gale Research Inc. ITP. 1995.]

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