Chimpanzees of Bossou are well known for using a stone hammer and anvil to crack open the nuts of the oil palm tree (Elaeis guineensis). Among all the tool use behaviors observed in the wild, nut cracking is probably the most sophisticated performed by chimpanzees.Watch the Videos View Their Profiles
The number of Bossou chimpanzees has decreased to eight (3 males and 5 females) following the death of FLANLE at the end of August 2016. The Bossou chimpanzee community remains semi-isolated from neighboring groups of chimpanzees; no females have transferred to the Bossou community from neighboring communities in four decades. Four out of the five females in the Bossou community are estimated to be over 50 years old. Their genetic diversity and indeed their survival is now critically threatened.
Note: chimpanzees have a life expectancy of 50 years in the wild.
In January 1997, Professor Matsuzawa and his colleagues launched the “Green Corridor Project" with the goal of connecting the isolated forest fragment in Bossou to the forests of the Nimba Mountains. This was to be achieved by planting trees along a 300m wide and 4km long stretch of savanna extending between these two areas. The aim is to re-establish a flow of migration between the Bossou chimpanzee community and the neighboring Nimba populations.
We have faced innumerable setbacks and successes in the last two decades. There was several days when bush fire spread to the green corridor, and we were so stunned that we could only stand there speechless and stare at the devastated land. Despite such obstacles, the project has moved forward step-by-step and we have eventually succeeded in making huge progress. According to video-records taken from camera trap devices that we set up within the green corridor, two male Bossou chimpanzees have been seen to walk in the green corridor. This video footage also demonstrated that more savanna monkeys are using the area than in recent years. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Green Corridor Project. This year is likely to be an especially significant year for the project; the green corridor is about to reach the Nimba Mountains. We have just 150 more meters to go!
This section will introduce you to 100+ video clips from our chimpanzee field research site in Bossou and Nimba.