In several ape species other than humans, m.asturbation has been observed. Even the usage of s.ex toys—masturbation tools—has been observed in the wild, including in male long-tailed macaques. Now, scientists claim to have seen a male chimpanzee in the wild utilizing a made-by-people item for m.asturbation for the first time.
The incident was reported to have occurred in Bulindi, Uganda, in August 2018, and involved a young male chimpanzee by the name of Araali. The scientists observed the monkey moving the empty plastic pesticide bottle after his p.enis emerged from it as he was playing with it and doing pelvic thrust movements. The male chimp displayed a “play face,” or a relaxed open mouth look chimps create when having fun, according to the research team.
The crew was unable to establish whether the chimpanzee ejaculated into the bottle. This is not just scientists being unduly curious about what poor Araali does; this incident might shed light on a more general issue about the origins of m.asturbatory behavior in wild chimpanzees. Given that Araali was a subordinate man in the group, the research team does not think it is connected to a strategy to enhance sperm quality or as a means of s.exual expression.
“Araali’s motivation to examine and interact with a new human object is presumably what led to his masturbatory behavior. In addition to s.exual stimulation, male chimps also display penile erections when they are excited about food and during some social activities, such as play, the researchers said in their report.
“Araali’s autoerotic reaction was probably brought on by the open bottle’s physical characteristics, indicating he recognized its potential for that use. The fact that he put on a play face while “copulating” with the bottle suggests that his behavior was “pleasant” or “fun.””
Although most wild great apes, including chimpanzees, are either uninterested in or afraid of human-made goods, Araali’s tribe frequently interacts with people of the human race. They consume agricultural foods and frequently come across trash left behind by people, including items like that plastic bottle.
Things are different in captivity. In zoos and rescue facilities, chimpanzees have been observed m.asturbating with their hands, feet, mouths, and against a cage wall or screen while utilizing manipulative objects, in one instance a poor frog. Understanding of our closest animal cousins is increased when we see a similar behavior in the wild.
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