To show coolness, orangutans like humans use slang, says study   

WION Web Team
London Updated: Mar 22, 2022, 02:00 PM(IST)

Orangutans use slang like humans, says study (file photo). Photograph:( Reuters )

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The study has been published in the journal ‘Nature Ecology and Evolution’. The researchers, who studied the “kiss-squeak” alarm calls of the wild communities of these apes in Borneo and Sumatra, said that they spent around 6,120 observation hours at six research stations between 2005 and 2010. They also recorded orangutan kiss-squeaks of around 70 individuals

Believe it or not, it seems orangutans also use slang to show coolness.  

Orangutans are able to come up with new versions of the calls, which can vary in pitch and duration, found the researchers.  

Not just this, the frequency of novel calls is also influenced by the density of the community.  

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The study has been published in the journal ‘Nature Ecology and Evolution’.  

The researchers, who studied the “kiss-squeak” alarm calls of the wild communities of these apes in Borneo and Sumatra, said that they spent around 6,120 observation hours at six research stations between 2005 and 2010. They also recorded orangutan kiss-squeaks of around 70 individuals.   

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Dr Adriano Lameira, first author of the research from the department of psychology at the University of Warwick, said, “The way I see it is that low densities [of] orangutans have a slang repertoire that they constantly revisit and use. They are ‘conservative’, but once a new call variant is used, everyone hears it and the variant is quickly incorporated, enriching the slang.”   

“In high density [communities of orangutans], communication is more like a cacophony. It seems ‘novelty’ is at a premium, much like in songbirds, and that individuals want to show off their coolness and how [much of a] rebel they are,” Lameira said.  

(With inputs from agencies) 

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