The Daily Telegraph

Chimps really do have the beat


Chimpanzee­s have their own individual drumming beats which they use to send “social media” messages across the jungle, scientists have found.

According to research by the University of St Andrews and published in the journal Animal Behaviour, some chimpanzee­s in Uganda’s Budongo Forest have a regular rhythm like rock and blues drummers, while others have more variable rhythms like jazz.

The animals drum on the roots of rainforest trees with their hands and feet, sending messages that carry over 1km through the dense humid forests.

The study shows male chimpanzee­s have their own signature rhythms, allowing them to send informatio­n that reveals who is where, and what they are doing. Researcher­s were able to identify individual chimps by their drumming and said were so fast they could barely see their hands moving.*

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