Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Chimp advances

Apparently we've underestimated our chimp cousins:

Chimpanzees may have been using stone "hammers" as long as 4,300 years ago. An international research team, led by archaeologist Julio Mercader of the University of Calgary, Canada, said Monday it had uncovered the hammers, dated to that time, in the West African country Ivory Coast. It would be the earliest known use of tools by chimpanzees.

The hammers were used to crack nuts, a behavior still seen in chimps in that area, the researchers said in a paper in the online edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The finding may indicate that a "chimpanzee stone age" began in ancient times, the researchers say.

Good for the chimps, but I won't be impressed until they can open a bottle of beer with a bottle opener, successfully operate a remote control, and convince the female chimp in their lives to let them watch football on Thursday night, all day Saturday, all day Sunday, and Monday night. Then and only then will I welcome them as brothers. Anybody can fling poop; only man can fling bull poop well enough to let his wife let him get fat watching football 4 days a week.

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