Weird Nature Fun Facts You Should Know About Apes  

Katherine Ripley
706 votes 309 voters 7.3k views 20 items

The great apes—gorillas, chimpanzees, and orangutans—are humans' closest living relatives. They share about 98 percent of our DNA. Great apes are remarkable creatures that show profound intelligence and capacity for emotion and this list is full of cool ape facts that you've probably never heard before. Get to know your ape pals!

These fun facts about apes will make you realize that these animals are profoundly similar to us. Vote up the ape facts you think are the most interesting, and get inspired to help save the great apes.
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Apes Can Create Words

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Video: YouTube
Even though they cannot speak, great apes can be taught sign language. What's even more amazing is that when they don't know the word for an object, they will combine other words to describe it. Ape caretakers have noticed them creating the following combinations of signs: "white" and "tiger" to describe a zebra, "ball" and "beans" to denote peas, and "bark," "sky" and "dog" to describe a helicopter.
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Bonobo Chimps Make Love, Not War

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Photo:  Skitterphoto/Pixabay/CC0 1.0
Bonobo chimps use sex to dissolve conflicts—they're the only ape that doesn't kill (including humans). Sex between two female or two male bonobos is common, and before a big feast there's usually an orgy. Bonobo chimps are also the only animals observed engaging in oral sex.
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Humans And Apes Have The Same Blood Types

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Photo:  Banc de Sang i Teixits/flickr
All great apes have one of four blood types: A, B, AB, or O, just like humans. This means that in theory, a human could get a blood transfusion from an ape, but more research is needed to determine whether it's medically possible.
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Human Birth Control Works On Apes

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Photo:  GabiSanda/Pixabay/CC0 1.0
Zoos might give birth control to gorillas or chimps to prevent incest, or to prevent breeding in general if they do not have the resources to care for a new baby, but don't want to separate the males and female.
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