Why Does Panama Monkeys Use Stone Tools for Breaking Nuts?

Why Does Panama Monkeys Use Stone Tools for Breaking Nuts?

We have an interesting news for you about Panama monkeys. It turns out that a group of white-faced capuchin monkeys in Panama wanted to go to Stone Age.

Why Researchers think like that, because Panama monkeys have begun to use stone tools for breaking nuts and shellfish.

[As reported in New Scientist, the group inhabits Jicarón island, a small island off the coast of Panama and part of the Coiba National Park. Three islands make up the national park, with capuchin monkeys on all three of them. However, only the monkeys on Jicarón have started using tools – and not all the capuchins at that. Only the males in a particular region of the island use them. A paper with the findings is currently available on BioArXiv,] mentions IFLScience.

“We were surprised that this behavior appears to be geographically localised,” lead author Brendan Barrett at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology told New Scientist.

The first time this behavior was noticed early in 2004 by a co-author Alicia Ibáñez (monkeys used stone tools). And then in March 2017 scientists placed the camera across the three islands so that to see the monkeys in the act.

So, what did the researchers of team have found?

The team saw the male monkeys break coconuts, crabs, and snails. However, it remains a mystery why this behavior is not more spread out to other groups on the island. [The researchers note that individual monkeys move between groups, so in theory the innovation should spread].

Now the team thinks the explanation of the Panama monkey’s actions is that they are entering to Stone Age. Scientists hope that more exploration and further observations of these monkeys will help explain what is going on.

In addition to this article [the white-faced capuchins are the second American species to enter the Stone Age. Another group of capuchins, found in South America, use stone tools and may have done so for 700 years. The other two species are macaques in Thailand and chimpanzees in West Africa], informed IFLScience.

Below You can watch the video about their actions!

 

Source: IFLScience