It’s a YES for the boNObo!
Along with chimpanzees, the bonobo is man’s closest living relative. Only found in the Democratic Republic of Congo, this highly intelligent and endangered species is unique.
Bonobos are particularly sociable and peaceful primates. One remarkable feature of bonobo society is the low level of aggression between individuals, thought to be due to the highly complex social system.
Unlike chimpanzees, bonobos don’t form male-dominated societies. Instead, females form strong bonds and male bonobos will often defer to them. One of the most striking and unique feature of bonobos is the use of sex as a method of communication. Bonobos use sex to diffuse situations and create bonds, both with their own sex as well as the opposite sex.
Five fab facts:
- Bonobos were the last great ape species to be discovered.
- At night, bonobos sleep in trees, in nests constructed by breaking and folding branches.
- Bonobos can stand and walk easily on two feet.
- A bonobo group is always led by a female.
- Bonobos make high-pitched noises which sound more like a flock of birds than a primate.
To find out more about the bonobo, check out ARKive’s images and videos.
Ruth Hendry, ARKive Media Researcher