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Of Interest:
sign language

From A to Chimpanzee

You thought we were kidding about monkey news, eh? The BBC is reporting on an article in the journal Animal Cognition regarding the cataloguing of the ‘gestural repertoire’ of chimpanzees [yes, we know chimpanzees are apes, not monkeys] studied in the wild by a team from the University of St. Andrews. Yes, a dictionary of deliberate movements and their meanings.

There are, apparently, as many as 66 recognizable signals, which more than doubles the roughly 30 that had been observed in chimps in captivity. Perhaps most interestingly, by comparing the films to those made of orangutans and gorillas, the researchers are seeing a significant number of overlaps, and this suggests that the common ancestor of all great apes - including humans - used at least some of the same gestures still used today.