Human Like Animals (02:27)
Host Armstrong Wedgwood (Matt Lucas) examines humankind’s closest relatives, the great apes, in this episode of “Round Planet.” From their opposable thumbs to their ability to use tools, they share many things in common with people.
Three-quarters of the world’s great apes are found in Africa, and the Virunga Mountains are home to the mighty mountain gorilla. Up to three meters of rain can fall there a year. Each family group is dominated by an alpha male.
Gorilla Diet (01:55)
Mountain gorillas spend five hours a day eating. The silverback leads the way, and his family follows, stopping where he stops and eating what he eats. Their vegetarian diet includes goosegrass, fungi and, occasionally, wood.
Tool-Using Primates (05:17)
Chimpanzees are intelligent, social animals with a complex culture. They live in groups of 15 to 150 members, utilizing a political system in which favors are traded. They fish for ants with sticks and crack nuts with rocks. Some hunt and eat monkeys.
In Congo lives the most socially advanced ape, the bonobo. Western scientists have only known about them since the 1920s. Humans share 96% of their DNA with these primates. Bonobo troops are ruled by females, and the peace is kept through non-stop promiscuity.
Man of the Forest (06:35)
In the jungles of Indonesia lives the orangutan. These primates are less social than bonobos; they prefer to live on their own, except when raising infants. In addition to vegetation their diet includes honey and ants.
Credits: Round Planet: Great Apes (00:31)
Credits: Round Planet: Great Apes
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