Thursday, October 22, 2015

Halloween countdown from Chimp&See!

For the next 10 days we'll been showcasing some of Chimp&See's spookiest videos on facebook and twitter filled with things that go bump in the night (and sometimes during the day too)! Check back here daily to see what makes our top 10 list!

10) Chimp&See's Spooky Rompo 

We started the countdown with this video from Crimson Dew that sets the tone perfectly and was found by modertaor jwidness. Its just an illusion created by a foggy and wet camera lens (or is it?!? muahhahahahahahah!) or perhaps the legendary Rompo?

original video can be found here:

9) Spiders
We've got some great spider videos on Chimp&See, sometimes they can even be a bit distracting! Citzien scientist Boleyn commented that "because of the #spider I almost missed the #genet" on this video from Muddy frost: 

Also, we suspect that these floaty orbs found by StarwatcherHB and Zanna640 are actually out of focus spiders near the camera lens at Dry Lake but secretly we hope they are benevolent forest spirits like the Kodama or Yumboes 

Here are a few more spider videos to make your skin crawl:

8) Elephantom
Citizen scientist moderator ksigler noted that these elephants seems to appear out of nowhere at Cool Silence. It's amazing how in all of our videos these massive beasts seem to be so unobtrusive in the forest, ghost-like one might say. 

7) Attack of the not so killer bees
Citizen scientist Eswiniarski is pretty sure that this guinea baboon was stung by a bee in this video from Dry Lake. Luckily he seems to have made a quick recovery.

originals here: and 

6) Ghost & Pirate Chimps 
Night mode on our camera traps sometimes makes the chimps look extra ghostly on the videos. Citizen scientist MargC found that our ginger chimp from Dry Lake named Roux looks especially pale in black and white ( and you can see more videos of Roux here:

While matching chimps, we rely on special features that distinguish each chimp from one another.The night videos are often tricky for this purpose since many of the features get washed out in low light. Citizen scientists Eswiniarski and AnLand noticed however that this male chimp from Lingering Shape has a special feature that is probably only seen at night: a right eye that does not reflect any light. 
(original videos: and

5) Fires of Samhain
Before Halloween was Halloween, it was Samhain. And a big part of Samhain is fire. "It is suggested that the fires were a kind of imitative or sympathetic magic – they mimicked the Sun, helping the "powers of growth" and holding back the decay and darkness of winter. They may also have served to symbolically "burn up and destroy all harmful influences".Accounts from the 18th and 19th centuries suggest that the fires (as well as their smoke and ashes) were deemed to have protective and cleansing powers".

We have a lot of fires at our current site Dry Lake and they burn during the day and night. Some are natural due to the dryness of the site and some are set by people for agricultural purposes.

How do chimpanzees react to fire you ask? Check out this paper by Pruetz and LaDuke "Reaction to fire by savanna chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes verus) at Fongoli, Senegal: Conceptualization of "fire behavior" and the case for a chimpanzee model."

Thanks to citizen scientists starwatcherHBMorra and clt21duke for highlighting these great clips ( , ,

4) The forests have eyes (and they are adorable, I mean spooky)

Thanks to citizen scientists jwidness and snorticus for finding these great clips from Red Water and Dry Lake! ( ,

3) Halloween photobomb
Ever get that feeling that there is sssssssssssome body behind you? Citizen Scientist rlb66xyz 6 noticed that this Cool Silence duiker is being seriously photobombed by a snake slithering towards it in the lower right part of the video right above the duiker's head. Sssssssssssssneaky!

(original video:

2) Going batty
You wouldn't guess that we'd get a lot of bats on our camera traps - but we do! In this clip from Quiet Wood citizen scientist markehurd saw something a bit batty in this red river hog video clip

(original video here:

And If you want to check out more bat videos visit our bat tag group:

1) A potto, a galago and the legend of the egbere
We did not expect to see the more elusive smaller primates like galagos (bushbabies) and pottos in our video footage. But our amazing, observant and patient citizen scientists managed to find both! We end our Halloween countdown with this legend from Nigeria about bushbabies.
Bushbabies in the Yoruba language are called 'egbere' and their legend has been passed from generation to generation. The egbere are little, supernatural human like creatures(or spirits) that wonder through the forest carrying a mat (their tail) and lamp (their eyes). Their unique cry sounds like that of a child or little baby which lures humans to them at night.According to popular folklore, bushbabies are usually encountered by hunters deep in the forests. It is said that anyone who is able to steal an egbere's mat will become rich. But, the person has to withstand 7 days of tribulation caused by the creature who wants its property back and the hunter must not lose site of the mat during this time. During those days, the person will not be able to sleep because of the creature's incessant cries which only he can hear. If the person gives up within the 7 days, the Bush Baby will kill them, the fate that awaits most people who try to steal the egbere's mat!
adapted from and

Click here to see all our galago videos:
and potto videos:

We hope you enjoyed our 10 day countdown and we wish you a very Happy Halloween from Chimp&See!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

1.5 million classifications: Thank you all!

(written by chimp&see moderators jwidness and AnLand)

Chimp and See just hit the amazing 1.5 million classification milestone, and it's thanks to the wonderful work of all of our citizen scientists that we've come so far!  

A big thank you to all our volunteers for their effort and interest!

We're currently working through our first site with footage from savanna habitats and we're seeing many new and interesting animals including a jackal feasting on flying termites, and a couple of individually identifiable warthogs (each with a broken tusk).  (jackal eating termites) (Buster the warthog) (Leroy the warthog)

This little guy and his/her mom are our latest chimpanzee matching success and waiting for their names.

Come join us at and help us discover what else is out there!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Chimp and See (and Hear!)

Sometimes, our most interesting discoveries aren’t what we see, but what we hear! In this series of posts, we’ll share some of the fascinating sounds of Africa that we’ve heard in the Chimp & See project.

First up - chimps, of course! It is believed that chimpanzees have over 30 types of vocalizations that they use to communicate with each other. Here are a few of the most common types that we’ve caught on video:

Pant-hoots are loud calls for communicating information, especially over a distance. Here, Andrew lets out a pant-hoot from his seat on the ground.

Every individual’s pant-hoot is unique.  For comparison, this clip shows our one-armed friend, Dodge, combining his pant-hoot with thumps against a tree.  This display is referred to as 'drumming.'

Pant-grunts are submissive greetings.  In this clip, we see Teddy seated on the ground using a rock tool.  Bendo, with nuts in his mouth and each hand, makes pant-grunts as he joins Teddy to wait for his turn to use the rock.

Food grunts are made when food is found or while eating.  Here, we see a chimp passing by the camera on his way to a food patch, where (off-screen) other chimps are emitting food grunts.

Victim screams are heard when a chimp is disturbed by a something or is under attack.  In this clip, a female carrying an infant enters an area where a male is eating.  Her screams here indicate her uncertainty of the situation.  Her body language also communicates submissiveness to the male.

That’s all for now, but we have many more vocal chimps over at Chimp & See!  Check them out: 

Monday, October 12, 2015

Dry Lake Lion!

#DailyZoo User jim pea found our first West African Lion! 

(thanks to moderator AnLand for tweeting it first!)

Sunday, October 11, 2015


‪#‎DailyZoo‬ - Users Eswiniarski, ksigler and Boleyn just had the following exchange about this video:

> That's risky business..
> That's why it's a quickie :)

Click here to see what they're talking about:

and visit to help us annotate our camera trap videos from across Africa!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

DailyZoo Roux

‪#‎DailyZoo‬: Citizen Scientist @Snorticus found this great video and screen capture of the chimpanzee named ‪#‎Roux‬

Join the discussions here:

and here:

and join us on to help us classify camera trap videos from across Africa!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Red Chimp from Dry Lake - Roux

A new site called Dry Lake is up on and we have lots of new species at this site which features chimps living in a savannah-woodland habitat. We are seeing a lot of things we haven't seen before like this gorgeous brown/red female chimp!