Scientists have discovered that Chimps like the “action”, which tells me they’re even more dangerous and unpredictable than before. If they are compelled to take risks over a “safe-bet” then there may be some creative attacks in our future. From the Daily Mail:

We already know that they use elaborate tools, have good memories for figures and pass on knowledge to their offspring.

But now it has emerged that chimpanzees have something else in common with humans – they like a little flutter.

When given the choice between a safe bet and a high-risk and high stakes option, chimps will always choose the latter.

It means the apes – who share 98 per cent of their DNA with humans – are the only member of the animal kingdom prepared to gamble.

Apparently they have never seen a squirrel try and cross the road. Those furry rats look like their rolling the dice every time they get in the street,

It also adds to the growing list of human-like behavior seen in apes, our closest relatives in the wild.

Previous studies have shown that chimps use tools to gather food, are better at memory puzzles than students and leave notes to each other in the forest using leaves and twigs.

Uh…you started off the article with this sentence, why repeat it? Can we say “filler”?

The team who made the latest discovery believes chimps evolved to take risks in the wild because their supplies of food are not secure.

The study, led by Dr Sarah Heilbronner of Duke University, North Carolina, compared the gambling habits of a group of chimps with their relatives, bonobos – or pygmy chimps.

Bonobos split off from the chimp family tree a million years ago.

They are smaller than common chimps and are only found in the wild in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Although both species feed heavily on fruit, bonobos have a more predictable supply of food and eat more ground-based vegetation.

Common chimps, in contrast, have less stable food supplies and are forced to take risks.

Unlike bonobos, common chimps will chase monkeys for food.

Sometimes they will chase you for fun. Then beat you up, take your wallet and steal your girlfriend. But enough about my past experiences…

While hunting is riskier – and takes more effort – the rewards are much greater if the hunt is successful.

The scientists put five captive chimps and five captive bonobos through a series of experiments to test how keen they were on gambling.

They were presented with two upside down bowls that differed in color and shape, the scientists report in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters.

One color bowl was always “safe” and always hid four grapes.

The “risky” bowl covered anything between one and seven grapes – with the chances of getting one grape the same as getting seven.

The animals had to choose which bowl to lift up by sliding a clear plastic door.

Each of the apes were familiarized with the bowls, before carrying out the test more than 120 times.

The chimps were far more likely to gamble and pick the high risk bowl. Bonobos, on the other hand, liked to play it safe.

The authors said: “Because chimpanzees exploit riskier food sources in the wild, we predicted that they would exhibit greater tolerance for risk in choices about food.

“Results confirmed this prediction: chimpanzees significantly preferred the risky option, whereas bonobos preferred the fixed option.”

They said that this was the case in nearly every individual, adding: “This difference is notable given that the two species share similar general anatomy and life histories.”

So if you think that chimps won’t go to extraordinary lengths to destroy us and take over…think again. No risk is too much for these mavericks. How can you defeat a foe who have nothing to lose?

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