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Research shows young chimps mimic children's behavior

It looks as though children aren't the only ones in this world who use toys to foster their imagination. According to, a group of researchers has stated that many young female chimpanzees play with sticks the same way young girls often act with dolls.

The data was collected after observing the Kanyawara group of chimpanzees in the Kibale National Park in Uganda for more than 10 years.

"We find that juveniles tend to carry sticks in a manner suggestive of rudimentary doll play," the authors wrote in the most recent issue of Current Biology, according to the news outlet. "And, as in children and captive monkeys, this behavior is more common in females than in males."

The playful behavior would sometimes continue for hours at a time, and often mimicked the way their mothers acted around children.

According to, there are roughly 100,000 to 200,000 chimpanzees left in the wild at the moment. Experts believe their risk of extinction is rooted in their loss of habitat, which has been destroyed to make way for roads and other infrastructure.
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