Thank You, Chimpanzees!

chimpanzeeNext time you munch on a chocolate bar, think of chimpanzees. Researchers have found that wild chimps in the Republic of Guinea, West Africa, are helping farmers to cultivate cocoa plants by dispersing the seeds.

After eating the pulp, chimpanzees spit out the seeds – or, erm, expel them from the other end. Farmers later tend to the saplings, clearing trees so sunlight can reach them.

This symbiosis reveals ‘the ability of wildlife to coexist in human-impacted habitats’, says lead author of the study Dr Kimberley Hockings from Oxford Brookes University.