Africa-Press – Cape verde. A recent discovery has indicated that the most recent common ancestor people shared with great apes used this gestures. Scholars from St. Andrews University discovered the fact that humans understand many gestures that wild chimps and bonobos are using to communicate. The research was published in the peer-reviewed academic journal PLOS Biology.
The study was conducted the following way: the scientists demonstrated to volunteers a video of primate gestures and then test subjects had to choose the correct meaning of this gesture. They were able to correctly discern roughly 50% of the apes’ gesticulations.
For instance, tearing strips from a leaf with teeth is an ape’s way of flirting, while a mouth stroke is asking for food. Apes use a body language “lexicon”, which consists of more than 80 gestures.
Humans generally don`t use ape gestures, though as it was already said, they are able to understand them. Scientists stress that it is unclear whether we inherited the ability to recognize these gestures genetically, or whether non-verbal communication of people is actually not that different from that of the other primates, allowing us to discern the meaning of the gesture even without knowing the context.
The ability of apes to communicate with gestures is not something entirely new. Gorilla Koko mastered more than 1,000 signs from the language of deafmutes and learned to understand more than 2,000 words. Also she was reportedly able to communicate thoughts and emotions.
For More News And Analysis About Cape verde Follow Africa-Press