Bonobo Makes Own Fire to Fry Marshmallow

The Bonobo is a cousin to another very popular member of his family, the chimpanzee. He is a 35 year old primate and he is named Kanzi. He had been acting uniquely to the amazement of all.  His skills had been honed over the years and he can do stuff many others of its relatives are unable to do.


He was actually born into captivity. His mother was a captive of humans and she was pregnant when she was captured.  Therefore, he was born among humans and he grew up among them. This helped him to develop certain skills many other members of his family do not have access.


Kanzi grew up at the Ape Cognition and Conservation Initiative. Dr. Savage-Rumbaugh of the organization said Kanzi can make fire just because he wants to and not because he is compelled to do it. The doctor also declared that Kanzi watched the movie Quest For Fire when he was still very young. The movie is about how early man made fire and tried to put the fire under control.  Dr Savage-Rumbaugh went further by saying the Ape watched this movie with keen interest and watched it more than 100 times.


Dr. Savage-Rumbaugh said, among other things: ” Kanzi makes fire because he wants to. He used to watch the film Quest for Fire when he was very young which was about early man struggling to control fire”

The doctor went further by saying Kanzi pours water on the fire once he is through in order to put it out, indicating that the ape Bonobo understands the importance of safety.

Kanzi was said to use his fire to roast hamburgers and marshmallows exactly the way humans do. Kanzi is said to also understand at least 3,000 words in English language.  It is also reported he is able to point out symbols and lexigrams. With these, he can communicate back to humans.  The scientist said Kanzi’s mother too was taught about language but she did not pick it up as fast as her son.




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