Navigation Links
The ultimate chimp challenge
Date:2/23/2013

A study, published today by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), shows that just like humans love getting stuck into a crossword, chimpanzees get the same feeling of satisfaction from completing tricky puzzles.

Scientists set up a challenge for six chimpanzees at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo using plumbing pipes from a DIY store. The challenge involved moving red dice through a network of pipes until they fell into an exit chamber. This could only be achieved by the chimps prodding sticks into holes in the pipes to change the direction of the dice. The same task was also carried out with Brazil nuts, but the exit chamber removed so that the nuts fell out as a tasty treat for the chimps.

The paper was published today in the American Journal of Primatology.

ZSL researcher Fay Clark says: "We noticed that the chimps were keen to complete the puzzle regardless of whether or not they received a food reward. This strongly suggests they get similar feelings of satisfaction to humans who often complete brain games for a feel-good reward."

The adult family group of chimpanzees at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo consist of two females and four males, three of which are half-brothers: Phil, Grant and Elvis. This study allowed them to solve a novel cognitive problem in their normal social grouping, by choice. In addition, the chimpanzees were not trained on how to use the device.

"For chimps in the wild, this task is a little bit like foraging for insects or honey inside a tree stump or a termite mound; except more challenging because the dice do not stick to the tool," Fay added.

The challenge, which only cost about 40 to make, was made more intricate by connecting many pipes together, and the level further increased by making pipes opaque so chimpanzees could only see the dice or nuts through small holes.

The chimps took part in the cognitive challenge as part of their normal daily routine and doing the brain teaser was completely voluntarily. As part of the Zoo's enrichment programme, they also receive tasty treats hidden in boxes, as well as pillows and blankets every night to make up their own beds. Chimps build their own nests every night in the wild, and this enrichment encourages the animals' natural behaviours.

This study suggests that like humans, chimpanzees are motivated to solve a puzzle when there is no food reward. They do so for the sake of the challenge itself. It also suggests that chimpanzee cognition can be measured on social groups under more naturalistic conditions.


'/>"/>

Contact: Smita Chandra
smita.chandra@zsl.org
020-744-96288
Zoological Society of London
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Engineered bacteria can make the ultimate sacrifice
2. Crayfish species proves to be the ultimate survivor
3. UCSB anthropologist studies reciprocity among chimpanzees and bonobos
4. Sanctuary chimps show high rates of drug-resistant staph
5. When it comes to food, chimps only think of themselves
6. Chimpanzee ground nests offer new insight into our ancestors descent from the trees
7. Nearby chimpanzee populations show much greater genetic diversity than distant human populations
8. Conference on securing the future supply of food: Challenges and opportunities
9. Winners of 10th annual International Science & Technology Visualization Challenge announced
10. New dinosaur fossil challenges bird evolution theory
11. Preventing climate change: The size of the energy challenge
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/13/2016)... physicians supporting Medicaid patients in Central Florida ... telehealth thanks to a new partnership with higi.   ... can routinely track key health measurements, such as blood ... they opt in, share them with IMPOWER clinicians through ... location at no cost. By leveraging this data, IMPOWER ...
(Date:3/22/2016)... March 22, 2016 ... Sensors Market for Consumer Industry by Type (Image, ... Application (Communication & IT, Entertainment, Home Appliances, ... Forecast to 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the ... to reach USD 26.76 Billion by 2022, ...
(Date:3/15/2016)... --> --> ... Research "Digital Door Lock Systems Market - Global Industry Analysis, ... global digital door lock systems market in terms of revenue ... forecast to grow at a CAGR of 31.8% during the ... enterprises (MSMEs) across the world and high industrial activity driving ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/24/2016)...   MedyMatch Technology Ltd ., the data analytics healthcare ... support tools in the emergency room, announced today that it ... Technology Industries (IATI) BioMed Conference. The Conference ... National Life Sciences and Technology Week, and is being held ... Tel Aviv, Israel . Gene Saragnese ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... , ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... newly re-branded identity. The new Media Cybernetics corporate branding reflects a results-driven revitalization ... imaging and image analysis. The re-branding components include a crisp, refreshed logo and ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... ... May 23, 2016 , ... ... Precision Farming in 2017 and Beyond. The paper outlines the key trends that ... ag industry. , “We’ve witnessed a lot of highs and lows as the ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... OXFORD, England , May 23, 2016 ... Wednesday, May 25 th at 10:15 a.m. ET before ... about the role genetically engineered mosquitos can play in controlling ... known carrier of the Zika virus.      (Logo: ... genetically engineered male mosquito with a self-limiting gene. Trials in ...
Breaking Biology Technology: