PART 1 PART 2 PART 3 PART 4 PART 5 PART 6 PART 7 PART 8 PART 9 330-331] comments on: FFH: Orangutans consume 2% insects; from p. 11: "the 2% digression may be seen as incidental and insignificant." Rationalizations about Dietary Deviations among Primates, Let's review some of the claims. Apes eat a variety of plant and animal foods, with the majority of food being plant foods, which can include fruit, leaves, stalks, roots and seeds, including nuts and grass seeds. As this article shows, diversity rather than specialization is typical of primate diets. Most non-human hominoids are rare or endangered. Combined with the evolutionary factors outlined, there is strong evidence that shows our ancestral dependence on cooked food over millions of years (even pre-Homo sapiens!) Almost all the studies in animal language acquisition have been done with "great apes", and though there is continuing dispute as to whether they demonstrate real language abilities, there is no doubt that they involve significant feats of learning. MATERIALS AND METHODS . †Afropithecidae [T]he Gombe chimpanzees removed 8% of the local baboon population in 1968-1969 (Teleki, 1973a) and 8-13% of the local colobus population in 1973-1974 (Busse, 1977). Note: The above quote is included to specifically inform readers that there is no evidence that predation by chimps is a "new" behavior, and that there is extensive, complex, baboon/chimp interaction. Preference for animal matter seems confirmed. High variability of primate diets Hence, since most readers would generally understand that the phrase "apes are NOT vegans" means that a human who eats the same diet as the apes would not qualify as a vegan, here we won't worry about the technical terms unless/until they are necessary to assist the reader in understanding the material. Wild primates take most of the daily diet from plant sources, eating moderate to small amounts of animal source foods (ASF). GO TO PART 7 - Insights about Human Nutrition & Digestion from Comparative Physiology While some apes do eat meat their diet is predominantly vegetarian and these teeth may have played a more significant role in defence. Other apes less closely related to humans. GO TO PART 7 - Insights about Human Nutrition & Digestion from Comparative Physiology GO TO PART 2 - Looking at Ape Diets: Myths, Realities, and Rationalizations Mountain Gorillas also like to eat the leaves, little shoots and sap of bamboo. Insectivory by mountain gorillas is discussed further later in this section. Many characteristics of modern primates, including our own species, derive from an early ancestor's practice of taking most of its food from the tropical canopy Therefore, cladistically, apes, catarrhines and related contemporary extinct groups such as Parapithecidaea are monkeys as well, for any consistent definition of "monkey". One may hear an advocate claiming that "apes are vegans," then later the same advocate might criticize others for using the same terminology--i.e., "apes are NOT vegans"; the specific criticism being that a biological term is more appropriate (e.g., folivore, frugivore, faunivore). FFH then implies (assumes) that the behavior of the chimps of Gombe is in imitation of human behavior. GO TO PART 1 - Brief Overview: What is the Relevance of Comparative Anatomical and Physiological "Proofs"? Preference for animal matter seems confirmed. However, the line of argument given above is incorrect and logically insufficient to establish the claimed result. GO TO PART 3 - The Fossil-Record Evidence about Human Diet In fact, in a comparison of our DNA, scientists kept finding identical genes again and again. Kortlandt  also discusses insect consumption by chimps (p. 133): Their diets also vary; gorillas are foliovores, while the others are all primarily frugivores, although the common chimpanzee does some hunting for meat. https://fanaticcook.blogspot.com/2009/06/are-ape-diets-suited-to-humans.html This collection was curated by our team at EAT SMARTER to fit your needs within the category of Ape Diet. GO TO PART 4 - Intelligence, Evolution of the Human Brain, and Diet The response in Fit Food for Humanity to the information that anthropoid apes are not strict vegetarians could be characterized as reliance on outdated information, rationalizations, and hand-waving.  Humans and other apes occasionally eat other primates. Yet, evolutionary biology tells us that we have a lot in common with the great apes. Insect Consumption by Chimps is Universal. Once evolutionary adaptation occurs, the "imitation" behavior would no longer be an imitation (supposing it were that, in some hazily conceived past)--it is natural. The Evidence of Ape/Primate Diets Previously, the divergence between humans and other living hominoids was thought to have occurred 15 to 20 million years ago, and several species of that time period, such as Ramapithecus, were once thought to be hominins and possible ancestors of humans. This reasoning suggests that the "imitation" argument is dubious at best. Its earliest meaning was generally of any non-human anthropoid primate, Non-human great apes eat very little meat. Thus, omnivorous primates are mainly frugivorous and, depending upon body size, obtain most of their protein from insects and leaves. People with raised Although hindgut fermentation also occurs in humans [26–28], there is evidence that wild great apes derive greater amount of total daily metabolic energy from this process than do humans on Western diets [20–22]. Sort by. Because dietary classifications are not strict in nature, a frugivore might deliberately eat some animal foods, hence not qualify as "vegetarian" as the term applies in human culture (similar remarks apply to folivores). Once evolutionary adaptation occurs, the "imitation" behavior would no longer be an imitation (supposing it were that, in some hazily conceived past)--it is natural. They say we were meant to eat meat; so, we should eat lots of it. How is it possible, then, that the primates serving as prey to chimpanzees in Gombe National Park, and possibly also at other sites, have not developed more successful defensive tactics? For other uses, see, Changes in taxonomy and terminology ("hominid" v "hominin"), Although Dawkins is clear that he uses "apes" for Hominoidea, he also uses "great apes" in ways which exclude humans. The term hominins is also due to Gray (1824), intended as including the human lineage (see also Hominidae#Terminology, Human taxonomy). Preference for animal matter seems confirmed. Kortlandt  also discusses insect consumption by chimps (p. 133): REPLY/COMMENTS: Both lowland and mountain gorillas consume insects, deliberately and indirectly, that is, on the vegetation they consume. Insect Consumption by Chimps is Universal. The interaction between baboons and chimps is quite interesting and serves to illuminate the shallow nature of the "imitation" argument. June 3, 2013 – Most apes eat leaves and fruits from trees and shrubs. The diet was plant based, like the diet eaten by apes, who genetically are our closest relatives. Chimpanzee, species of ape that, along with the bonobo, is most closely related to humans. Four years later the team published the species' genome, which completes a basic genetic library of the great apes—a branch of primates including people, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans. The families, and extant genera and species of hominoids are: The lesser apes are the gibbon family, Hylobatidae, of sixteen species; all are native to Asia. Let's review some of the claims. The interaction between baboons and chimps is quite interesting and serves to illuminate the shallow nature of the "imitation" argument. GO TO PART 5 - Limitations on Comparative Dietary Proofs However, the many affinities between humans and other primates – and especially the "great apes" – made it clear that the distinction made no scientific sense. The chief threat to most of the endangered species is loss of tropical rainforest habitat, though some populations are further imperiled by hunting for bushmeat. In the second place, we must remember that nearly all the other and more important differences between man and the Quadrumana are manifestly adaptive in their nature, and relate chiefly to the erect position of man; such as the structure of his hand, foot, and pelvis, the curvature of his spine, and the position of his head. Insects are eaten by all extant apes, i.e., chimpanzees (e.g., Lawick-Goodall 1968), orang-utans (Gladikas-Brindamour1), gorillas (Fossey2), gibbons (Chivers 1972, R.L. Kortlandt  reports that (p. 133), "orang-utans eat honey, insects and, occasionally, bird's eggs, but no vertebrates." The booklet then reaches the conclusion that humans are natural vegetarians, i.e., that the vegetarian diet is the (only) diet in accord with human anatomy. The primates called "apes" today became known to Europeans after the 18th century. Major studies of behaviour in the field were completed on the three better-known "great apes", for example by Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey and Birute Galdikas. How is it possible, then, that the primates serving as prey to chimpanzees in Gombe National Park, and possibly also at other sites, have not developed more successful defensive tactics? The orangutan was moved to the genus Pongo in 1799 by Lacépède. Insect food Over time, authorities have changed the names and the meanings of names of groups and subgroups as new evidence—that is, new discoveries of fossils and tools and of observations in the field, plus continual comparisons of anatomy and DNA sequences—has changed the understanding of relationships between hominoids. PART 1 PART 2 PART 3 PART 4 PART 5 PART 6 PART 7 PART 8 PART 9  These are anatomical adaptations, first, to vertical hanging and swinging locomotion (brachiation) and, later, to developing balance in a bipedal pose. Thus, there are at least three common, or traditional, uses of the term "ape": non-specialists may not distinguish between "monkeys" and "apes", that is, they may use the two terms interchangeably; or they may use "ape" for any tailless monkey or non-human hominoid; or they may use the term "ape" to just mean the non-human hominoids. Preface. Another relevant aspect of dietary classifications: The terms vegan, fruitarian, and vegetarian are all human cultural terms, and are used, at least by most dietary advocates, with narrow definitions. Hladik and Viroben (1974) have shown that this insect food is nutritionally important in order to compensate for a deficiency of certain amino acids in the plant foods, even in the rich environment of the Gabon rain-forest. Among vegetarian stuff, fruits are the favorite food of gorillas and it make about 67% part of their diet if available in abundance. GO TO PART 5 - Limitations on Comparative Dietary Proofs The interaction between baboons and chimps is quite interesting and serves to illuminate the shallow nature of the "imitation" argument. Competing approaches to methodology and terminology are found among current scientific sources. Although the term "Orang Outang" is listed as a variety – Homo sylvestris – under this species, it is nevertheless not clear to which animal this name refers, as Linnaeus had no specimen to refer to, hence no precise description. GO TO PART 8 - Further Issues in the Debate over Omnivorous vs. Vegetarian Diets ["Trophic" refers to the different levels of the food chain.] Apes (Hominoidea /hɒmɪˈnɔɪdiːə/) are a branch of Old World tailless simians native to Africa and Southeast Asia. The diet was plant based, like the diet eaten by apes, who genetically are our closest relatives. The front of the ape skull is characterised by its sinuses, fusion of the frontal bone, and by post-orbital constriction. The taxonomy shown here follows the monophyletic groupings according to the modern understanding of human and great ape relationships. Though gut proportions differ, overall gut anatomy and the pattern of digestive kinetics of extant apes and humans are very similar. A comparison of humans vs. allegedly "vegetarian" anthropoid apes is frequently a part of comparative anatomy/physiology "proofs" that assert humans are natural vegetarians. Harding , noting the widespread reports of predatory behavior and meat consumption by non-human primates, makes the interesting comment (p. 191; my explanatory comments are in brackets [ ] below): REPLY/COMMENTS: The reality is that predation on vertebrates by chimpanzees is widespread throughout tropical Africa. REPLY/COMMENTS: The reality is that predation on vertebrates by chimpanzees is widespread throughout tropical Africa. Tutin and Fernandez  report consumption of insects by lowland gorillas in the Lope Reserve, Gabon: termites (whose remains were contained in 27.4% of gorilla feces) and weaver ants. I expect that the known geographical distribution of predatory behavior will continue to expand as new chimpanzee projects are launched, though it is probable that some populations practice this behavior little or not at all, while others do so regularly and systematically (Teleki, 1975). Moreover, predatory behavior involving vertebrate prey has now been recorded at all major study sites in equatorial Africa, from Uganda and Tanzania to Sierra Leone and Senegal. The gibbons split from the rest about 18 mya, and the hominid splits happened 14 mya (Pongo), 7 mya (Gorilla), and 3–5 mya (Homo & Pan). The above quote from Hamilton and Busse  cites Fossey (personal communication) regarding insect consumption by mountain gorillas. Later, after the term "monkey" had been introduced into English, "ape" was specialized to refer to a tailless (therefore exceptionally human-like) primate. SEE REFERENCE LIST GO TO PART 1 - Brief Overview: What is the Relevance of Comparative Anatomical and Physiological "Proofs"? While gibbons may not nest, are not as large as orangutans and are generally referred to as one of the lesser apes, gibbons eat much of the same food items as orangutans. In fact, most species of primate are omnivorous (see Harding ) and omnivory should be considered an evolutionarily conservative and generalized trait among primates. GO TO PART 7 - Insights about Human Nutrition & Digestion from Comparative Physiology The Evidence of Ape/Primate Diets , "Ape", from Old English apa, is a word of uncertain origin. GO TO PART 4 - Intelligence, Evolution of the Human Brain, and Diet While the great apes are considerably larger than monkeys, gibbons (lesser apes) are smaller than some monkeys. But, later fossil finds indicated that Ramapithecus was more closely related to the orangutan; and new biochemical evidence indicates that the last common ancestor of humans and non-hominins (that is, the chimpanzees) occurred between 5 and 10 million years ago, and probably nearer the lower end of that range; see Chimpanzee–human last common ancestor (CHLCA). GO TO PART 9 - Conclusions: The End, or The Beginning of a New Approach to Your Diet? GO TO PART 6 - What Comparative Anatomy Does and Doesn't Tell Us about Human Diet How is it possible, then, that the primates serving as prey to chimpanzees in Gombe National Park, and possibly also at other sites, have not developed more successful defensive tactics? Though vegans and vegetarians insist that humans are herbivores because we externally resemble apes, internally we are significantly different.  for details. Any answer other than the proposition that chimpanzees have only recently acquired predatory inclinations, for which there is no supportive evidence at all (Teleki, 1973a), would be welcome." Some elevated the distinction to the level of order. The great apes of Africa are also facing threat from the Ebola virus. How is it possible, then, that the primates serving as prey to chimpanzees in Gombe National Park, and possibly also at other sites, have not developed more successful defensive tactics? This alone suggests that sufficient time has elapsed, in evolutionary terms, for chimps to adapt to such allegedly "imitation" behavior. We collected commonly consumed foods, which were analyzed by the same methods as those used for human diets.  Some of these primates are now close to extinction with habitat loss being the underlying cause. Today, there are eight extant genera of hominoids. ), such terms are first used as shorthand references to a particular dietary specialization but then gradually become inclusive descriptions of an animal's entire diet. Insects and other animal foods are nutrient-dense foods: they supply far more calories and nutrients per gram of edible portion than the same weight of most of the plant foods commonly consumed (i.e., fruits other than oily fruits, and leaves). Hominidae Chimpanzees, on the other hand, spend a remarkable amount of time, mental effort and tool use on searching out insects and feeding on them in every place where they have been intensively studied. Ape and human cells have many important differences. Fossils and molecular data are two independent sources of information that should in principle provide consistent inferences of when evolutionary lineages diverged. Chimpanzees, on the other hand, spend a remarkable amount of time, mental effort and tool use on searching out insects and feeding on them in every place where they have been intensively studied. The diet consisted of fruit, vegetables, nuts and honey, and all items during the first week were eaten raw. GO TO PART 9 - Conclusions: The End, or The Beginning of a New Approach to Your Diet? Over and above the reality that predation and meat-eating by chimps is widespread, the claim that chimps do so in imitation of humans or baboons is both unproven and dubious. SEE TABLE OF CONTENTS FOR:  Linnaeus named the orangutan Simia satyrus ("satyr monkey"). These topics are addressed later in this paper.  Modern biologists and primatologists refer to apes that are not human as "non-human" apes. The diet consisted of fruit, vegetables, nuts and honey, and all items during the first week were eaten raw. [T]he Gombe chimpanzees removed 8% of the local baboon population in 1968-1969 (Teleki, 1973a) and 8-13% of the local colobus population in 1973-1974 (Busse, 1977). Regarding chimpanzee predation, Teleki [1981, p. 305] reports that: The structural problems in the above type of argument are addressed in later sections. By Charles Q. Choi 15 December 2009. ...the anomalous nature of an interspecific relationship that includes play with baboons, consumption of baboons, and competition with baboons for at least one kind of prey... For photos of a wild orangutan eating insects, see Knott , p. 42; and for a photo of a wild orangutan eating a vertebrate--a rare event--see Knott , p. 54. FFH: Gorillas are total vegetarians. †Pliobatidae Their digestive systems are not very different from our own, and therefore a healthy diet for an ape is also a healthy diet for humans. All the great apes, with the exception of the gorilla, are primarily frugivorous, but they do eat some animal products as well, though generally less than the chimp-- although lowland gorillas eat insects at a comparable rate to chimps. "Ape" has been used as a synonym for "monkey" or for naming any primate with a human-like appearance, particularly those without a tail. As a result of this, the myth of the "vegetarian ape" is slowly slipping away. In general, dietary classifications in nature are not as distinct/clear as the narrow, simplistic, precisely defined diets promoted by certain dietary advocates. to a modern human diet. ...the anomalous nature of an interspecific relationship that includes play with baboons, consumption of baboons, and competition with baboons for at least one kind of prey... Kortlandt  also discusses insect consumption by chimps (p. 133): Back to Research-Based Appraisals of Alternative Diet Lore, Beyond Veg home | Feedback | Links, In general, dietary classifications in nature are not as distinct/. This particular ancient human seems to have missed the memo and stuck to mostly seafood. apes and monkeys) and Bimana (two-handed, i.e. 330-331] comments on: [T]he Gombe chimpanzees removed 8% of the local baboon population in 1968-1969 (Teleki, 1973a) and 8-13% of the local colobus population in 1973-1974 (Busse, 1977).