These compelling stories and photographs take us to places like Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda, Ivindo National Park in Gabon, and the Tai National Park in Cote d'Ivoire for an intimate and revealing look at the lives of African wild apes - and at the lives of the humans who study them. In tales of adventure, research, and conservation, veteran field researchers and conservationists describe exciting discoveries made over the past few decades about chimpanzees, bonobos, and gorillas. This book features vivid descriptions of interactions among these highly intelligent creatures as they hunt, socialize, and play. More difficult themes emerge as well, including the threats apes face from poaching, disease, and deforestation. In stories that are often moving and highly personal, this book takes measure of how special the great apes are and discusses positive conservation efforts, including ecotourism, that can help bring these magnificent animals back from the brink of extinction.
Martha M. Robbins is Research Associate at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. She is coeditor of Mountain Gorillas: Three Decades of Research at Karisoke and Feeding Ecology of Apes and Other Primates. Christophe Boesch is Director of the Department of Primatology at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. He is the author of The Real Chimpanzee: Sex Strategies in the Forest, among other books.
List of Illustrations Acknowledgments Introduction: Who, What, Where, and Why Martha M. Robbins 1. Discovering Apes Martha M. Robbins 2. Life and Death in the Forest Christophe Boesch 3. Encounters with Bili Chimpanzees in the Undisturbed Gangu Forest Cleve Hicks 4. Is Blood Thicker Than Water? Gottfried Hohmann and Barbara Fruth 5. Our Cousins in the Forest--or Bushmeat? Christophe Boesch 6. Discovering Chimpanzee Traditions Crickette Sanz and David Morgan 7. Keeping it in the Family: Tribal Warfare between Chimpanzee Communities Josephine Head 8. Winona's Search for the Right Silverback: Insights into Female Strategies at a Natural Rain Forest Clearing in Northern Congo Thomas Breuer 9. The Long Road to Habituation: A Window into the Lives of Gorillas Chloe Cipolletta 10. Among Silverbacks Martha M. Robbins 11. The Diversity of the Apes: What Is the Future? Christophe Boesch Contributors Index