Please Pass the Banana

Apes driving through the man jungle

Did you know that apes can … what, ask for a banana? No, apes cannot say “Please pass the banana”! Though wouldn’t it be cool and funny if they did? But what they can do is grasp a banana as we do, by bending the thumb to touch their fingers. Have you seen any other animal do that?

An Ape holding banana by bending fingers

What’s more, they can even bend their big toes to meet the other toes!!

And do you know what else makes apes different from other monkeys and more like us Humans? For one, they are tailless. And, they can stand upright on two feet.

An Ape standing upright

But most importantly, they have bigger brains and are much more intelligent than monkeys.

In fact, they are so intelligent than some apes have been taught to use the sign language. But that is only in captivity. They do not learn this naturally in the wild. In the wild, apes have been seen using small tools. For instance, they use a stick to poke into ant-hills. Then, when they pull it out, the stick becomes a yummy lolly with insects clinging to it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaEDeRJKN0s

Apes, like monkeys, are very social and love living in large groups. They sleep on trees too, though mostly travel on land. Do you know what their favorite food is? Yes, right, it’s bananas and other fruits. They like eating leaves and seeds too. Some apes also eat insects and small animals.

Do you know where you can find an ape? Yeah, the zoo, I know, I know; but where in the wild? Well, apes love the warm and hot climate. So the rainforests in South-east Asia and Africa are their favorite habitats.

Then again, apes are of two types – the great apes and lesser apes. Chimpanzees, Gorillas and Orangutans are great apes while Gibbons are lesser apes.

Can you guess which other animal some scientists believe should be considered a great ape too? It is us, “Humans”!!

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