Chimpanzee Archeology: Tool-Use Shows That Humans and Apes Closer Than Thought

NWF   |   August 14, 2009

When archeologists began to look at chimpanzees and their longstanding use of tools, some conventional thinking about the separation between man and beast got a little fuzzier.  

Science Daily.com reports:

“Julio Mercader, holder of the Canada Research Chair in Tropical Archaeology in the U of C’s Department of Archaeology, is a coauthor of a new paper titled “Primate archaeology” published recently in the journal Nature. Mercader is one of 18 co-authors from universities including Cambridge, Rutgers, Kyoto University and schools in Spain, Italy and France. They argue that recent discoveries of tool use by a wide variety of wild primates and archaeological evidence of chimpanzees using stone tools for thousands of years is forcing experts to re-think the traditional dividing lines between humans and other primate species as well as the belief that tool use is the exclusive domain of the genus Homo. The researchers advocate for a new inter-disciplinary field of primate archaeology”  See full article.

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