The bonobo may be the most closely related of all species to the human. We share about 98 % of our genetic make-up. We are more closely related to them and chimpanzees than chimpanzees are to gorillas.
Behaviorally the bonobo may be more like people than the chimp. However they are among the most recently discovered of species, thus, few people know about them.
The effects of captivity and of being around people may influence their behavior.
Bonobos are notable because they have very complex behavior and can resolve their conflicts by a variety of means that result in an overall peaceful society.
They look like people with neatly parted hair and red lips.
The individuals in this video were agitated about something. Bonobos normally are calmer than these; however, the video shows that they were able to get along peaceably.
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The Bonobo, also called the Pygmy or Gracile Chimpanzee (Pan paniscus) belongs to the species (with the common chimpanzee) that is most closely related to humans. Its DNA is 98% identical to that of humans and some researchers think they should be classified with the human species, i.e., Homo paniscus. Bonobos have relatively long legs, a matriarchal cultural, and are generally considered frugivorous. They often walk upright and have a human-like appearance. Frans de Waal, one of the leading primate researchers, has stated that the bonobo is capable of empathy, kindness, altruism, and compassion. E. Savage-Rumbaugh and Roger Lewin have extensively studied the ability of the bonobo to learn language. Kanzi has learned over 3000 spoken English words and around 400 lexigrams. He can understand simple grammatical sentences and possibly invent new vocal sounds. The bonobo is also an accomplished tool user.
The Chimpanzee -Chimp or Common Chimpanzee- (Pan troglodytes) is the species considered the most closely related to humans. They can weigh up to 155 lbs and stand up to 4 feet tall. Like people, they have long lives. For example Cheeta, the star of the movie, Tarzan, is 75 years old. They are native to Africa and four subspecies exist. They are highly intelligent, make elaborate use of tools, and can use language. A chimpanzee named Washoe learned up to 800 signs in American Sign Language. Researchers into chimpanzee language include Sally Boysen, Ohio State University, (who has taught chimpanzees to communicate using a computer), Noam Chomsky, and David Premack. Although chimpanzees are shorter than most people, they are much stronger. The average Chimpanzee has over 5 times the upper-body strength of a human male. A chimp, even a young one, can easily overpower a grown man.
The gorilla (gorilla gorilla) is the largest of all living primates. These African apes are divided into two species and 4 or 5 subspecies. Their DNA is 97-98% identical to that of humans and they are considered the next closest relative after the chimpanzee. Gorillas can be over 6 feet tall and weight over 500 lbs. They are highly intelligent. Some such as Koko have been taught a subset of sign language. They use tools for a number of purposes.
The 2011 Guinness World Records book shows that Colo is the world’s oldest gorilla at 53 years old. She lives at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio. She holds many more amazing records.