, Volume 22, Issue 4, pp 474-486

Comparisons of nests made by different populations of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes )

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Data on the nests built by chimpanzees were collected in Equatorial Guinea and Senegal. A post-hoc comparison was made on six variables common to both sets of data, and where possible, the effects of season and type of habitat were also compared. The only variable which was not found to differ significantly was the minimum distance between nests. More effects both of season and type of habitat were found in Senegal than in Equatorial Guinea. This is attributed to the marked seasonality and more variable vegetation in the former site. It was concluded that all the differences found in nest-building could be explained by environmental factors and although learning seems to be involved, it remains for further investigation to demonstrate how this might give rise to cultural variation in nest-building.