Advertisement

Primates

, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 193–205 | Cite as

Tool-use for catching ants by chimpanzees at Bossou and Monts Nimba, West Africa

  • Yukimaru Sugiyama
Article

Abstract

The use of tools by wild chimpanzees to catch ants was studied at Bossou and Monts Nimba, south-eastern Guinée. Insect-eating by chimpanzees at Bossou appears to be opportunistic and ant-catching was seen only in certain years. The most common prey species wasDorylus (Dorylus) molestusGerstaecker. Sixty wands for catching ants were found at Bossou. Half of them were made from Zingiberaceae or Marantaceae, the stems and long petioles of which are usually straight, and have few branches. The length of the wand was variable. The mean length of ant-catching wands (46.7 cm) was between those found at Gombe and Tai. Ants' nests were usually dug up by hand, but on one occasion a digging stick was used. Four chimpanzees who used only one hand to manipulate the wand had also been observed using a stone hammer for nut-cracking. All of them used the same hand in wand-manipulation as in nut-cracking. As reported for chimpanzees at Gombe, Mahale, and Tai, more females than males tended to catch ants with wands though the sex difference was not demonstrated statistically. Ants which climbed up the wand were directly squeezed off using the lower-lip and eaten. This is the same method as seen at Tai, but different from most episodes observed at Gombe. Juveniles and infants also caught ants using wands, however, they seemed to do this more out of curiosity than as a means of feeding. At Goera, over 15 km from Bossou and separated from it by Monts Nimba, the same characteristics of ant-catching techniques were evident from traces.

Key Words

Dorylus (Dorylus) molestus Tool-using behavior Ant-catching wand Zingiberales Culture 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Adam, J.-G., 1971.Flora Descriptive des Monts Nimba. Editions du Museum, Paris.Google Scholar
  2. Alp, R., 1993. Meat eating and ant dipping by wild chimpanzees in Sierra Leone.Primates, 34: 463–468.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Baldwin, P. J., 1979. The natural history of the chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes verus), at Mt. Assirik, Senegal. Ph.D. thesis, Univ. of Stirling, Stirling.Google Scholar
  4. Boesch, C. &H. Boesch, 1983. Optimization of nut-cracking with natural hammers by wild chimpanzees.Behaviour, 83: 265–286.Google Scholar
  5. ———— & ————, 1984. Mental map in wild chimpanzees: an analysis of hammer transports for nut cracking.Primates, 25: 160–170.Google Scholar
  6. ———— & ————, 1990. Tool use and tool making in wild chimpanzees.Folia Primatol., 54: 86–99.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Brewer, S. M. &W. C. McGrew, 1990. Chimpanzee use of a tool-set to get honey.Folia Primatol., 54: 100–104.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Goodall, J., 1986.The Chimpanzees of Gombe: Patterns of Behavior. Belknap Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts.Google Scholar
  9. Kortlandt, A., 1986. The use of stone tools by wild-living chimpanzees and earliest hominids.J. Human Evol., 15: 77–132.Google Scholar
  10. ———— &E. Holzhaus, 1987. New data on the use of stone tools by chimpanzees in Guinea and Liberia.Primates, 28: 473–496.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Lawick-Goodall, J. van, 1968. The behaviour of free-living chimpanzees in the Gombe Stream Reserve.Anim. Behav. Monogr., 1: 161–311.Google Scholar
  12. ————, 1973. Cultural elements in a chimpanzee community. In:Precultural Primate Behavior,E. W. Menzel,Jr. (ed.), S. Karger, Basel, pp. 144–184.Google Scholar
  13. Matsuzawa, T., 1994. Field experiments on use of stone tools in the wild. In:Chimpanzee Cultures,R. W. Wrangham,W. C. McGrew,Frans B. M. de Waal, &P. G. Heltne (eds.), Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, pp. 351–370.Google Scholar
  14. McBeath, N. M. &W. C. McGrew, 1982. Tools used by wild chimpanzees to obtain termites at Mt. Assirik, Senegal: the influence of habitat.J. Human Evol., 11: 65–72.Google Scholar
  15. McGrew, W. C., 1974. Tool use by wild chimpanzees in feeding upon driver ants.J. Human Evol., 3: 501–508.Google Scholar
  16. ————, 1977. Socialization and object manipulation of wild chimpanzees. In:Primate Bio-social Development,S. Chevalier-Skolnikoff &F. E. Poirier (eds.), Garland, New York, pp. 261–288.Google Scholar
  17. ————, 1979. Evolutionary implications of sex differences in chimpanzee predation and tool use. In:The Great Apes,D. A. Hamburg &E. R. McCown (eds.), Benjamin/Cummings, Menlo Park, pp. 440–463.Google Scholar
  18. ————, 1992.Chimpanzee Material Culture: Implications for Human Culture. Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge.Google Scholar
  19. ———— &M. E. Rogers, 1983. Chimpanzees, tools, and termites: new record from Gabon.Amer. J. Primatol., 5: 171–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. ————,C. E. G. Tutin, &P. J. Baldwin, 1979. Chimpanzees, tools, and termites: cross-cultural comparisons of Senegal, Tanzania, and Rio Muni.Man (n.s.), 14: 185–214.Google Scholar
  21. Nishida, T., 1973. The ant-gathering behaviour by the use of tools among wild chimpanzees of the Mahali Mountains.J. Human Evol., 2: 357–370.Google Scholar
  22. ————, 1980. Culture of chimpanzees.Kagaku, 50: 146–154. (in Japanese)Google Scholar
  23. ———— &M. Hiraiwa, 1982. Natural history of a tool-using behavior by wild chimpanzees in feeding upon wood-boring ants.J. Human Evol., 11: 73–99.Google Scholar
  24. Sabater Pi, J., 1974. An elementary industry of the chimpanzees in the Okorobiko Mountains, Rio Muni (Republic of Equatorial Guinea), West Africa.Primates, 15: 351–364.Google Scholar
  25. Sugiyama, Y., 1985. The brush-stick of chimpanzees found in south-west Cameroon and their cultural characteristics.Primates, 26: 361–374.Google Scholar
  26. ————, 1989. Population dynamics of chimpanzees at Bossou, Guinea. In:Understanding Chimpanzees,P. G. Heltne &L. A. Marquardt (eds.), Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, pp. 134–145.Google Scholar
  27. ————, 1993. Local variation of tools and tool use among wild chimpanzee populations. In:The Use of Tools by Human and Non-human Primates,A Berthelet &J. Chavaillon (eds.), Clarendon Press, Oxford, pp. 175–187.Google Scholar
  28. ————,T. Fushimi, O. Sakura, &T. Matsuzawa, 1993. Hand preference and tool use in wild chimpanzees.Primates, 34: 151–159.Google Scholar
  29. ————,S. Kawamoto, O. Takenaka, K. Kumazaki, &N. Miwa, 1993. Paternity discrimination and inter-group relationships of chimpanzees at Bossou.Primates, 34: 545–552.Google Scholar
  30. ———— &J. Koman, 1979a. Social structure and dynamics of wild chimpanzees at Bossou, Guinea.Primates, 20: 323–339.Google Scholar
  31. ———— & ————, 1979b. Tool-using and making behavior in wild chimpanzees at Bossou, Guinea.Primates, 20: 513–524.Google Scholar
  32. ———— & ————, 1987. A preliminary list of chimpanzees' alimentation at Bossou, Guinea.Primates, 28: 133–147.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. ———— & ————, 1992. The flora of Bossou: its utilization by chimpanzees and humans.Afr. Stud. Monogr., 13: 127–169.Google Scholar
  34. ————, ————, &M. B. Sow, 1988. Ant-catching wands of wild chimpanzees at Bossou, Guinea.Folia Primatol., 51: 56–60.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  35. Takasaki, H., T. Nishida, S. Uehara, K. Norikoshi, K. Kawanaka, Y. Takahata, M. Hiraiwa-Hasegawa, T. Hasegawa, H. Hayaki, K. Masui, &M. Huffman, 1990. Summary of meteorological data at Mahale research camps, 1973–1988. In:The Chimpanzees of the Mahale Mountains,T. Nishida (ed.), Univ. Tokyo Press, Tokyo, pp. 291–300.Google Scholar
  36. Uehara, S., 1986. Sex and group differences in feeding on animals by wild chimpanzees in the Mahale Mountains National Park, Tanzania.Primates, 27: 1–13.Google Scholar
  37. Yamakoshi, G. &T. Matsuzawa, 1993. Chimpanzees of Nimba Reserve, Côte d'Ivoire.Prim. Res., 9: 13–18. (in Japanese)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Japan Monkey Centre 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yukimaru Sugiyama
    • 1
  1. 1.Primate Research InstituteKyoto UniversityAichiJapan

Personalised recommendations