Chimpanzee vs Bonobo

Which great ape will conquer its opponent?

Although chimpanzees and bonobos are considered different species, they both belong to the same genus. Their morphology, behavior, emotions and even cognition differ. This divergence between bonobos and chimpanzees occurred around 2 million years ago.

There are only a small number of bonobos on earth, hence it’s very rare to see one in the wild. They are among the most intelligent animals on earth. It is an ape whose social structure is very complex and unique: the females rule the roost in this largely peaceful society.

People are very familiar with chimpanzees when it comes to their behavior, perhaps because it is so similar to our own. Apes like bonobos, gorillas, and orangutans are classified as great apes.

As a result of their distinctive way of moving, they are referred to as knuckle-walkers for walking on the soles of their feet and gripping their knuckles on their hands.

Size and Body Description

Bonobos are apes with dark hair covering their most of bodies and they are about two-thirds the size of humans. They have noticeable longer hair in general than Chimpanzees.

Males average about 119 cm (47 inches) heigh, and weigh 37 – 61 kg (81 to 134 pounds). Females typically weigh between 27 and 38 kg and are 111 centimeters tall (43 inches).

A chimpanzee stands between 3 and 5.5 feet (1 and 1.7 meters) tall when erect, and weighs between 70 and 130 pounds (32 and 60 kilograms). It is generally true that males are larger and more robust than female.

Chimpanzees have no fur on their bodies, so they are only covered by a coat of brown or black hair. It is usually white on the skin, except for black on the face, hands, and feet.

Young animals have pink or white faces. Both males and females tend to get bald on the forehead and gray on the back as they age.

Wildlife Ranges and Habitats

The entire bonobos’ population lives within the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is just a small region of central Africa. Zoos and breeding programs around the world are home to populations of these animals.

Tropical rainforests are the habitat of this species. Agricultural and abandoned farmland has grown into forested areas where they now use to live.

These areas are referred to as secondary forests by researchers. You can find them in Marshes, wetlands, and grassy edges.

Chimpanzees live in different regions mostly in the east and central Africa. There are different ranges for each subspecies.

Western subspecies are located in the area between Southern Senegal to western Ghana. Nigeria-Cameroon Subspecies as the name suggests are found only in Nigeria and Cameroon.

This subspecies lives in southern Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the west end of the country. Finally, the eastern subspecies are mainly found in the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

There are various ecosystems in which these primates live in, and also different habitat preferences for different subspecies. Other species inhabit savannas, grasslands, woodlands, or chaparral while others live in tropical rainforests. Some can live above the mountains, up to 9,000 feet above sea level.

Diet & Nutrition

Bonobos usually feed while situated in trees and move to other trees when needed. Fruits and roots, as well as other vegetation, are the main foods they eat.

Invertebrates such as Caterpillars and earthworms supplement the diet. In unusual circumstances Bats, flying squirrels, and even young duikers have been observed being eaten by these creatures.

Bonobos play with and groom monkeys instead of hunting them, unlike chimpanzees. A bonobo does not exhibit the lethal invasion, cannibalism, and infanticide phenomena seen with chimpanzees.

Chimps are omnivores so they eat both meat and fruit. Besides. They also consume other small animals like monkeys. Often times they feed on nuts, eggs, bark and insects.

A chimpanzee’s day is filled with searching and eating food, but they do not wander through the forest looking for it.

During a particular season, they know where to find food and when to pick ripe fruits, so this shows immense intelligence. Chimpanzees share meat and coordinate their hunting efforts during hunting season. It is known that chimpanzees occasionally hunt other vertebrates even ones large in sizes like pigs and colobus.

Chimpanzees consume a variety of plants as well as medicinal varieties since they ease stomach upsets and eliminate parasites.

Behavioral Characteristics

It is common for bonobos to move around on all fours limbs during the day. The majority of their tool use in the wild is limited to dragging branches as intimidation displays and using leaf umbrellas as beds.

There may be as many as 10 bonobos traveling and feeding together in a group. In Bonobo society, mothers and sons share a special bond.

A daughter must leave the troop when she reaches the required age. Once she gives birth, the new group becomes permanent because all of the males breed with her.

Strong bonds form between adult females. It appears that bonobos are sensitive to one another, and there is generally peace among the female-led troops.

Chimpanzees are social animals, and their social structures rely on the association between males within a home range. Males have a social dominance over the females and adolescent males.

Female Chimp sometimes forms coalitions against male bullies or new immigrants.

Chimpanzees tend to have hostile relationships with each other. An adult male may patrol a group’s boundary to attack intruders.

Chimpanzees are highly intelligent animals that are capable of solving a wide variety of problems posed by human trainers. The use of sign language or image symbols has been taught to chimpanzees by several scientists.

Who will win a fight between a Bonobo and a Chimpanzee?

Bonobos are not particularly strong at fighting to the death, so this puts them at a disadvantage. Bonobos’ muscle tone is inferior to those of chimpanzees despite being roughly the same height as them.

Behavior-wise, Bonobo does not care about anything else than fun and sex. Taking part in sex is a way for bonobos to both resolve conflict and be reconciled after a fight.

Bonobos are slender compared to chimpanzees.
It is well known that chimpanzees are dangerous animals that attack other chimpanzees and hunt monkeys., so oftentimes they mean serious business.

Bonobos prefer making love to starting wars.
Chimpanzees might scare them with their egoistic male-dominated appearance, but Bonobos are also intelligent; they can fool the angry-looking Chimpanzee!

While chimpanzees can defeat bonobos, bonobos are also capable of fighting if they are fighting for females and the chance to mate.

In my opinion, a one-on-one fight between a chimpanzee and a bonobo would result in a chimpanzee winning, since it is more aggressive and is better built for fighting.

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