Kasakela Chimpanzee Community

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The Kasakela chimpanzee community is an inhabited community of wild eastern chimpanzees that lives in Gombe National Park near Lake Tanganyika in Tanzania.[1] The community was the subject of Dr. Jane Goodall's pioneering study that began in 1960, and studies have continued ever since.[1] As a result, the community has been instrumental in the study of chimpanzees, and has been popularized in several books and documentaries. The community's popularity was enhanced by Dr. Goodall's practice of giving names to the chimpanzees she was observing, in contrast to the typical scientific practice of identifying the subjects by number. Dr. Goodall generally used a naming convention in which infants were given names starting with the same letter as their mother, allowing the recognition of matrilineal lines.

One of the most important discoveries that was learned by observing the Kasakela chimpanzee community was the use of tools. On November 4, 1960, Dr. Goodall observed a chimpanzee that she had named David Greybeard using a grass stalk as a tool to extract termites from a termite hill. Later, she observed David Greybeard and another chimpanzee named Goliath stripping leaves off twigs to create termite fishing tools. Previously, tool use in chimpanzees was only rarely observed, and tool creation by non-human animals had never been observed. Until then, tool making was considered one of the defining characteristics of being human.[2][3][4] Another important observation occurred a few days earlier, on October 30, 1960. On that day Dr. Goodall observed the community's chimpanzees eating meat, dispelling the notion that chimpanzees are vegetarians.[4]

Several families within the Kasakela chimpanzee community have been particularly prominent in books and documentaries. The F-family has produced at least four alpha males for the community, and the matriarch, Flo, played a particularly important role in acknowledging Dr. Goodall's acceptance as a human observer by the community. The G-family has produced at least one alpha male, and also the birth of several twins, which are rare among chimpanzees. There are other families as well which include the T-family and S-family (which has produced one alpha male).

F-family[edit]

Flo[edit]

Flo (ca. 1919–1972)[5] was the matriarch of the F-family, so named because she and all her matrilineal descendents were given names beginning with the letter "F". In 1962, Flo was one of the first chimpanzees to approach Dr. Goodall's camp, along with her infant daughter Fifi. Video of Flo approaching Dr. Goodall and allowing Fifi to reach out to touch Dr. Goodall's forehead, letting Dr. Goodall know she had been accepted, is shown in the IMAX film Jane Goodall's Wild Chimpanzees.[6] Later she brought her sons Figan and Faben, who would later become prominent members of the community to the camp, and when she came into estrus in 1963 she attracted the community's males to Dr Goodall's camp.[7][8]

Flo was a high-ranking female who had at least five known offspring, three sons (Faben, Figan and Flint) and two daughters (Fifi and Flame). Flo was 28 years old when she gave birth to Faben. Most female chimps have their first infant when 12–14 years of age, so it is possible that Flo had at least one infant prior to Faben and that infant either died or, if it was a female, would have transferred to one of the other communities prior to Jane Goodall's arrival to Gombe. When Flo died in 1972, she was given an obituary in Britain's Sunday Times.[7]

Faben[edit]

Faben (ca. 1947–1975)[5] was Flo's oldest son and oldest known offspring.[9] He was a powerful male, but lost the use of one arm in a polio epidemic that ravaged the community in 1966.[9] Despite his disability, he learned to create spectacular bipedal charging displays, which allowed him to regain a high rank within the community.[9] His support was critical to Humphrey's ascension to alpha male rank in 1969, and then his brother Figan's ascension to alpha male in 1972.[10][11] Faben also participated in the conflicts with the rival Kahama community (which was formed by former Kasakela members) that occurred between 1973 and 1975, and was a leader in the killing of several Kahama males, including former Kasekala alpha male Goliath.[9][12] Faben himself died in 1975, possibly as a result of the conflicts with the Kahama community.[9] Following Faben's death, Figan had difficulty maintaining his alpha male position for several months.[10] Faben is believed to have fathered several Kasakela infants.[13]

Figan[edit]

Figan (ca. 1953–1982)[5] was Flo's second son.[14] Although younger than Faben, he was able to dominate his older brother after Faben's arm was paralyzed from polio in 1966.[14] With Faben's support, Figan was able to become alpha male in 1972 by defeating the prior alpha Humphrey and an older competitor Evered.[14] After Faben's death in 1975, Figan lost his unquestioned alpha status, in that he could be dominated by a coalition of males, but remained the top-ranked male.[14] By 1977, he had regained his alpha status by forging alliances with other males, including his predecessor Humphrey.[14] In 1979, he was toppled from his alpha status by 15-year-old Goblin, whom he had previously supported, but regained his alpha status by again forging alliances with other males.[14] Although a powerful male, Figan's ability to make alliances with other males was instrumental to allow him to hold on to his alpha status.[15] In 1982, Goblin unseated him again, and Figan disappeared and presumably died a few months later, although he was last seen in good health.[14] Although Figan was the alpha male for several years, he is not known for certain to have sired any infants, although he is believed to be the father of a few.[13]

Fifi[edit]

Fifi (ca.1958–2004)[5] was Flo's oldest daughter.[16] Like her mother, she became a high-ranking female within the community.[16] Fifi had nine infants, seven of whom survived to independence and six are still a part of the community.[16] Her two oldest sons, Freud and Frodo, both have become the community's alpha male, as did another son, Ferdinand. One of her other sons, Faustino, also attained high rank. Her three surviving daughters were Fanni, Flossi and Flirt.[16] She also had one son, Fred (1996–1997) and one daughter, Furaha (2002–2004) who died in infancy.[5] Fred was fathered by one of Fifi's other sons, Frodo.[17] Five-year-old Fifi was the focal point of the documentary People of the Forest: The Chimps of Gombe, in which her mother and siblings also featured, attempting to gain access to her infant brother Flint.[18] All four of Fifi's surviving sons had all held the alpha and/or beta positions in the community.

Flint[edit]

Flint (1964–1972) was Flo's third son, and her first infant born after Dr. Goodall began observing the community.[5] Flint had difficulty weaning, and became distraught when the birth of Flame displaced him as Flo's baby.[19] After Flame died, Flint regained his enthusiasm, but resumed his infantlike behavior.[19] After his nephew Freud was born, Flint became fascinated with the new infant and became an important influence of Freud's first year of life.[20] After Flo died in 1972, he became depressed and ill and died shortly afterward.[7]

Flame[edit]

Flame (1968–1969) was Flo's daughter.[5] Flo's son Flint, at age four, threw violent fits in order to suckle his mother's breast while newborn Flame was in Flo's arms. Flame disappeared shortly after she was born; before Flo's death.[21]

Freud[edit]

Freud (born 1971) is Fifi's oldest son.[22] As a juvenile, he benefited from a high-ranking mother and an uncle, Figan, who was the alpha male.[22] In 1993, Freud became the alpha male by unseating his childhood playmate Wilkie.[22] While the alpha male, his younger but larger brother Frodo became the second highest-ranking male in the community. In 1997, while Freud was afflicted by sarcoptic mange, Frodo was able to take over the alpha status.[22] Since losing his alpha status, Freud has settled into a role as a middle-ranking male, although could still threaten higher-ranking males when aroused.[23] The documentary Chimpanzee Family Fortunes ends with a scene of the orphaned young female Flirt finding solace after several lonely months by getting groomed by her older brother Freud.[24]

Freud's approach to maintaining his alpha status was different from his smaller predecessor Wilkie and his larger successor Frodo.[25] At 99 pounds (45 kg), Freud was larger than the 81 pounds (37 kg) Wilkie and smaller than the 113 pounds (51 kg) Frodo.[25] Freud was less aggressive than and groomed other males to help maintain alliances more often than Frodo, but engaged in more contact aggression and less grooming than Wilkie.[23][25]

Frodo[edit]

Frodo (born 1976-2013) was Fifi's second oldest son.[26] Even from a young age, Frodo was large and aggressive. He learned to throw rocks as a juvenile, sometimes throwing them at and hitting and bruising his human observers.[27] As an adult, he was one of the largest chimpanzees ever observed in the community, at about 113 pounds (51 kg) and remained aggressive.[25][26] He also became an excellent hunter of red colobus monkeys, and was also able to intimidate other chimpanzees into sharing their kills with him if he was unsuccessful.[28] His large size and aggressive nature allowed him to attain high status while his brother Freud was alpha, and on October 2, 1997, while Freud and other community members were suffering from sarcoptic mange, Frodo defeated Freud and attained the alpha male position.[26][28]

As alpha male, Frodo maintained his position largely through intimidation.[25][28] He rarely groomed other males, and often demanded that other males groom him.[25][28] Frodo maintained his alpha position until becoming ill himself in 2002.[24][28][29] He was then defeated by a coalition of several males and spent most of the next two years on his own recovering from his wounds and illness.[24][28][29] He received antibiotics from the researchers, which may have helped his recovery.[30] In 2004, he once again began traveling with the rest of the community, but was unable to reestablish his alpha status.[24][28]

Frodo's aggression has not been limited to colobus monkeys and other chimpanzees. In May 2002, he killed a 14-month-old human baby that the niece of a member of the research team had carried into his territory.[30] As a result, the Tanzanian National Parks Department considered killing Frodo.[30] In 1988, he attacked cartoonist Gary Larson, leaving him bruised and scratched.[30] In 1989, he attacked Dr. Goodall, beating her head to the point of nearly breaking her neck.[30] Frodo died last year from an infected wound.

Frodo has fathered at least eight infants, more than any other group male.[31][32] Infants he has fathered have included:

  • Fred (1996–1997), by his own mother Fifi[17]
  • Titan (1994–0000), a large, aggressive adolescent male by Patti[33][34]
  • Golden and Glitter (1998–0000), female twins and the oldest chimpanzee twins known to have survived in the wild, by Gremlin[17][24][29]

Fanni[edit]

Fanni (born 1981) is Fifi's oldest daughter. Her father was Goblin. She had her first infant, Fax, at just 11 years old, making her one of the youngest mothers seen in the community, although Fax did not survive to adulthood.She has also had five other children, males Fudge (1996–), Fundi (2000–), and Fifty (2010–). and females Familia (2004–) and Fadhila (2007–). Fudge, Fundi and Familia were fathered by Sheldon, a former alpha male.

Flossi[edit]

Flossi (born 1985) is Fifi's second oldest daughter. Unlike other female chimps in the F-family, upon reaching adulthood she emigrated from the Kasakela community to join the neighboring Mitumba Chimpanzee Community. Although it is typical for female chimpanzees to emigrate from their natal group upon reaching maturity, within the Kasakela community only about half the females do so. Flossi has given birth to four offspring, the male Forest (1997–0000), the females Fansi (2001–0000), Flower(2005–0000), and Falida (2009–0000).[35]

Faustino[edit]

Faustino (born May 8, 1989) is Fifi's third oldest son.[5] At the beginning of the documentary Chimps: So Like Us, the infant Faustino is shown with mother Fifi and sister Flossi trying out facial expressions.[36] Fifi became pregnant less than three years after Faustino was born, an unusually short time for a chimpanzee.[37] As a result, Faustino had to be weaned at an unusually young age, leading to a particularly difficult weaning conflict.[37] Faustino grew into a large but mellow adult who reminded observers of Freud.[37][38] He had worked his way up to become the beta, or second highest-ranking, male in the community until struck by a near fatal disease in 2005.[37] Although Faustino survived, he lost his high rank.[37] After recovering, Faustino slowly climbed his way back up the hierarchy, but it appears he will never become alpha male.

Ferdinand[edit]

Ferdinand (born 1992) is Fifi's fourth oldest son, and youngest surviving son.[5] By 2007, he had grown into a large enough male to wound the alpha male Kris, and researchers believed he would eventually become the third of Fifi's sons to become alpha male.[39][40] In 2008, he succeeded in supplanting Kris as alpha male, and was the alpha male as of 2010.[32][41][42][43]

Flirt[edit]

Flirt (born 1998) is Fifi's youngest surviving daughter.[5] She was a large baby and grew rapidly.[44] This probably allowed her to survive when her mother died before she was seven years old.[24][44] Although she spent a few lonely months after Fifi's death, she eventually began to travel with her brothers.[44] The documentary Chimpanzee Family Fortunes ends with Flirt finding solace after months of loneliness by being groomed by eldest brother Freud.[24]

G-family[edit]

Melissa[edit]

Melissa (ca.1950–1986)[17] was a high-ranking female and mother of long-term alpha male Goblin.[45] Researchers also suspected that she was related to alpha male Humphrey and another male, Mr McGregor.[45] She was afflicted by polio in the 1966 epidemic, and for a while was paralyzed in her neck and shoulders, and was forced to walk bipedally. However, she eventually regained use of her arms, although she never fully regained movement of her neck.[45] She gave birth to two sets of twins, one set in 1976 of which neither survived the year, and another set in 1977, of which only Gimble survived to adulthood.[17][45] Her other offspring who survived to adulthood was daughter Gremlin.[17] Her daughter Gremlin and her granddaughter Gaia have also given birth to twins.

Goblin[edit]

Goblin (September 1964–August 2004) was Melissa's oldest son.[17][46] He was discovered by Dr. Goodall when he was just a few hours old, with a twisted face that led her to name him Goblin.[47] Goblin was protected by Figan as an adolescent, but at the young age of age 15 in 1979 he challenged and defeated Figan to become the top-ranking male.[10][48] He was defeated and brutally beaten by a coalition of older males later in the year, giving up his top ranking.[10][48] Goblin regained the top-ranked position in 1982, and was the unambiguous alpha male, able to control even coalitions of rival males, by 1984.[10] Goblin maintained his alpha status until 1989, when he was badly beaten and injured by a coalition of males led by Wilkie.[4][36][46] He spent time away from the rest of the community recovering from his injuries, during which time Dr. Goodall administered medication to help him return to health.[36]

After recovering from his injuries, Goblin maintained a high-ranking status within the community by forming alliances with the alpha males, especially Freud and Frodo.[46][49] While he was establishing himself as a contender for the alpha position, he would occasionally beat up Dr. Goodall.[46] In 1983, when his mother Melissa was in estrus, he forced himself upon her despite her efforts to resist.[48] Fanni is his daughter, and he also fathered Fanni's two sons Fudge and Fundi.[46] His other offspring include daughter Tanga (1989–0000) by Patti and Tanga's son Tom (2001–0000).[33][46]

Gremlin[edit]

Gremlin (born 1970) is Melissa's only daughter to survive to adulthood.[17] Dr. Goodall has described her as her favorite chimpanzee due to her patience as a mother and her expertise in fishing for termites.[29] She has raised her twins, Golden and Glitter, to be the oldest wild twin chimpanzees known in the wild. Her other offspring are the males Getty (1982–1986), Galahad (1988–2000), Gimli (2004–0000), Gizmo (2010–0000) and female Gaia (1993–0000).[17]

Gimble[edit]

Gimble (born 1977) is one of two of Melissa's sons to survive to adulthood.[17] He was one of a set of twins; however, his twin brother Gyre died in 1978.[17] As a twin, he grew into a healthy but small adult.[50]

Gaia[edit]

Gaia (born 1993) is Gremlin's oldest daughter.[17] As a juvenile, she helped her mother raise the twins Glitter and Golden, and this is shown in a number of documentaries about the community.[24][29][51] Gremlin took Gaia's first-born son from her, and the son died in infancy. Gaia's second infant was stillborn, but her third pregnancy resulting in twins.[52] However, once again her mother took over the babies, and one of the twins died at a few days old. She finally gave birth to a son named Google in 2010[53][54]

Glitter and Golden[edit]

Glitter and Golden (born 1998) are the twin daughters of Gremlin, fathered by Frodo.[17][24][29] They are the only pair of wild chimpanzee twins known to have survived to the age of sexual maturity.[32] Several documentaries have featured Gremlin raising the twins, with help of their sister Gaia.[24][29] Each of the pair exhibits a different personality. Glitter is shy and cautious, while Golden is more adventurous and willing to engage in rough and tumble activities.[55] In 2011, Golden gave birth to daughter named Glamour. In 2012, Glitter gave birth to daughter named Gossamer.

P-family[edit]

Passion[edit]

Passion (1951?-1982) was a central female of the Kasakela community. She, along with her daughter Pom, captured, killed, and ate several newborns at Gombe. She was an indifferent mother to her three surviving offspring, but she became a very high ranking female. She appeared in 1964 and was a central female, but became more solitary later in life. She died of some type of wasting disease in 1982.

baby[edit]

Possibly born in 1962 and died in 1963. Cause of death unknown.

Pom[edit]

Pom (1965-1983) was Passion's oldest known offspring to survive to adulthood. Pom was instrumental in helping her mother capture and kill community infants. Pom gave birth herself to Pan in 1978, and was very cautious around her mother. Pan died of an accident in 1981. Pom eventually disappeared about a year after her mothers death. She may have transferred, but she was never seen again.

baby[edit]

1970 miscarriage or stillborn.

Prof[edit]

Prof (1971-?) was a male that survived to adulthood. He and Pom offered their little brother comfort following Passion's death. Prof and Pax associated closely for a number of years. Prof is deceased.

Pax[edit]

Pax (1977–present) was Passion's last offspring. He was only four years old when he was orphaned. He had the support of an elder brother and sister, and had very few behavioral issues following his mother's death. When Pax was very young his mother was wounded in some type of conflict. Pax lost his testicles as a result of the conflict, which has affected his personality greatly. He is small for a male, doesn't compete in the male hierarchy, and is unable to reproduce. He also has been chosen by a couple of orphans as a companion.

Pan[edit]

Pan (1978-1981) was the only known offspring of Pom. He was blown by a strong wind from a palm and died of his wounds four days later.

T-family[edit]

Patti[edit]

Patti (born 1961 died 2005) was not born in the Kasakela community but joined the community at adolescence in 1973. Even though she was an outsider, she was assertive from the beginning. Patti was usually found travelling alone with her offspring rather than other members of the community. She did not have the best luck as a mother at first and seemed not to know what to do with her babies. As a result, her first infant, Pibi, died shortly after birth. Her second son, Tapit, survived a rather rough childhood and died as a juvenile. Patti now has four surviving offspring: daughters Tita and Tanga, and sons Tarzan and Titan.

Pibi[edit]

Pibi (ca. 1978–1978) was oldest son and first born. He died in infancy.

Tapit[edit]

Tapit (ca. 1979–1983) was Patti's second oldest son. He had a tough life as an infant and died as a juvenile.

Tita[edit]

Tita (born 1984) is Patti oldest daughter. She gave birth to her first infant, Tibi, but her son died in infancy.

Pib2[edit]

Pib2 (ca. 1988–1988) was Patti fourth born infant who died in infancy without identification of gender.

Tanga[edit]

Tanga (born 1989) is Patti's second oldest daughter. She still lives in the community and gave birth to her first infant, Tom. In 2006, she gave birth to a daughter named Tabora. In 2012, she gave birth to a daughter named Tarime.

Titan[edit]

Titan (born 1994) is Patti's third oldest son, fathered by Frodo. Titan displays aggressive behaviour resembling his father Frodo's violent tendencies.

Tarzan[edit]

Tarzan (born 1999) is Patti's fourth oldest son and currently youngest infant.

Tibi[edit]

Tibi (ca. 1995–1995) was Tita's first son. He died in infancy.

Tom[edit]

Tom (born 2001) is Tanga's first son.

S-family[edit]

Sparrow[edit]

Sparrow (born 1958) is the oldest female and matriarch of the family. She has had seven offspring which include four sons, Sheldon, Steve, Spud and Sinbad and three daughters, Sandi, Barbet and Schweini. Of her seven offspring four are still alive which include, Sandi, Sheldon, Sinbad and Schweini. Her son Sheldon became the alpha male of the Kasakela community in 2004.

Sandi[edit]

Sandi (born 1973) is Sparrow's oldest daughter and first offspring. Sandi is one of the shyer females of the Gombe chimpanzees. She grew up within the community but her mother was not social and as a result, she still has a timid nature. Sandi is still close to her mother, Sparrow, and the two prefer each other's company rather than anyone else's. Sandi was very nervous of large groups of chimpanzees within the community and often prevented her offspring from playing with the others. However she has become much more confident and her offspring have thrived.

Sandi has three offspring which include two daughters, Sherehe and Samwise and one son, Sampson.

Barbet[edit]

Barbet (ca. 1978–1992) was Sparrow's second oldest daughter. She died in 1992.

Sheldon[edit]

Sheldon (born 1983) is Sparrow's oldest son. Sheldon grew up within the community as a subordinate male but within 2004 following the vacancy of the alpha position after former alpha Frodo's departure, when he became the alpha male. Sheldon held on to dominance for only a year and lost the alpha position to another male, Kris, in 2005.

  • Sheldon may have fathered Gimili, Gremllin's son, (as was mentioned in Chimpanzee Family Fortunes) during his reign as alpha male.

Steve[edit]

Steve (ca. 1989–1990) was Sparrow's second oldest son. He died in infancy at a year old.

Schweini[edit]

Schweini (born 1991) is Sparrow's third oldest daughter. She gave birth to her first infant, Safi (born on October 16, 2008).

Spud[edit]

Spud (ca. 1996–1998) was Sparrow's third oldest son. He died in infancy at around two years old.

Sinbad[edit]

Sinbad (born 2001) is Sparrow's youngest son.

Sherehe[edit]

Sherehe (born 1991) is Sandi's oldest daughter and first offspring. She gave birth to her first infant, Shangaa.

Sampson[edit]

Sampson (born 1996) is Sandi's oldest son.

Samwise[edit]

Samwise (born 2001) is Sandi's second oldest daughter.

Shangaa[edit]

Shangaa (born 2004) is Sherehe's oldest son and first offspring.

Safi[edit]

Safi (born October 16, 2008) is Schweini's oldest daughter and first offspring.

Alpha males[edit]

The alpha male is the highest-ranking male, most dominant chimp, and can control most situations, including situations in which he is opposed by a coalition of other males.[10] Nonetheless, an alpha male typically cannot monopolize breeding opportunities, and in some cases lower-ranking males have been more successful at mating than alpha males, since the alpha male has to spend much energy maintaining his rank.[56] Faben (Figan's older brother with a paralyzed arm), Evered (defeated by Figan in his bid for alpha status who became Ferdinand's father.) and Sherry (lower-ranking male who became Frodo's father) are examples of males who successfully devoted their energy to breeding success despite not attaining alpha status.[56] However, a very secure alpha male, such as Frodo, can use his status to increase his access to females in estrus, especially during the period when she is at peak fertility.[56]

Goliath was the first chimpanzee Dr. Goodall recognized as the alpha male.[4][57] In 1964, Mike, who was previously a low-ranking male, deposed him.[58][59] Goliath remained a high-ranking male for several more years, but fell in rank as he aged.[57] Eventually, Goliath was one of the chimpanzees who left the Kasakela community to form the Kahama community.[57] However, in 1975 he was brutally attacked by a group of Kasakela males led by Faben, and died as a result of his injuries.[12][57]

Mike figured out that incorporating cans and other objects left by the human researchers into his displays would make them more effective. These displays indeed allowed him to take over the alpha male rank in 1964.[58][59] By 1969, a group of younger males including Humphrey, Faben, Figan and Evered challenged and defeated him, making Humphrey the alpha male and returning Mike to his low-ranking position.[10]

From 1972 through 1989, two males, Figan and Goblin held the alpha position. Figan was able to defeat Humphrey when Faben became his ally. For a period after Faben's death in 1975, Figan remained the top-ranking male, but was unable to control coalitions of other males when they joined together, making his status as alpha male ambiguous. Within a few months, Figan reestablished himself as the unambiguous alpha by forging alliances with other high-ranking males, such as Humphrey. In 1979, 15-year-old Goblin, who had previously been protected by Figan challenged him for the alpha position. Goblin temporary held the top-ranking position in 1979, although could not control coalitions of other males, before the more senior males brutally beat him and restored Figan to the alpha position. By 1982 Goblin had reestablished himself as the top-ranking male, and by 1984 was unambiguously the alpha male, able to control situations even against coalitions of other males.[10]

In 1989 Wilkie defeated Goblin and attained the alpha position.[36] Wilkie, attained this position despite being one of the smallest males in the community, at 37 kilograms (82 lb).[60] According to researchers at the University of Minnesota's Jane Goodall Institute Center for Primate Studies, Wilkie attained his position primarily by becoming popular by obsessively grooming other males.[60] Unlike most males, Wilkie also groomed females.[60] Wilkie was overthrown in 1992 by his childhood playmate Freud, who was in turn deposed by his brother Frodo in 1997 while Freud was ill.[22][26] Freud, at 44.8 kilograms (99 lb), was larger than Wiklie and relied on a mixture of moderate force and grooming to become alpha and maintain his stautus.[60] Frodo, at 51.2 kilograms (113 lb), was one of the largest males ever seen in the group, relied primarily on brute force to attain and maintain alpha status.[60] After Frodo became ill in 2002, he was brutally beaten by a coalition of males led by Sheldon and spent two years traveling away from the rest of the community. No chimpanzee was able to establish himself as an alpha male until 2004. Sheldon briefly held the top-ranking male position in 2004, but by 2005 Kris had defeated all competitors, including Frodo, and established himself as the unambiguous alpha male.[24][29] In 2008, Kris was supplanted as alpha male by Ferdinand, the youngest surviving brother of Freud and Frodo.[41] As of 2012, Ferdinand is the alpha male of the community.[32][42][61]

Name Reign Lifespan Notes Reference
Goliath 1961–1964 ?–1975 [4][10]
Mike 1964–1969 ?–1975 [4][10][58][59]
Humphrey 1969–1971 ?–1980 [4][10][58][59]
vacant 1971–1972 After Humphrey was deposed as alpha in 1971, no chimpanzee clearly held the highest rank until Figan established himself as alpha male in 1972. [10]
Figan 1972–1979 1953–1982 For a nine-month period in 1975 and 1976, while Figan was clearly the highest-ranking male, he was not an unambiguous alpha male. [7][10]
Goblin 1979 1964–2004 In 1979, Goblin was able to oust Figan and become the top-ranked male, although he was not able to establish himself as an unambiguous alpha male before Figan regained his status. [10][49]
Figan 1979–1982 1953–1982 [7][10]
Goblin 1982–1989 1964–2004 Although Goblin established himself as the highest-ranking male during 1982, he did not become the unambiguous alpha male until 1984. [4][10][36][48]
Wilkie 1989–1993 1972– [4][36][60][62][63]
Freud 1993–1997 1971– [4][22][62]
Frodo 1997–2002 1976– [4][26][62][64]
vacant 2002–2004 After Frodo was ousted as alpha male during his illness in 2002, no male established himself as unambiguously the highest-ranking male until 2004. [24]
Sheldon 2004–2005 1983– [24][26][63][64][65][66]
Kris 2005–2008 1982– [4][24][26][63][66]
Ferdinand 2008– 1992– [41]

Alpha females[edit]

The alpha female is the highest-ranking female in the community who gets preferred access to food and resources because of her status. Female chimpanzee dominance may not be as intensive as males but females have a hierarchy. Unlike males, females can inherit their status from their mothers or move between communities and rise up the pecking order. In the Kasakela community, Flo was a high-ranking female. She had access to food and good sleeping sites. Her eldest daughter Fifi also became a high-ranked female. Fifi inherited her status from birth because her mother was a high-ranking female. Fifi became the alpha female in the community and her daughter Fanni also became a high-ranking female. Female dominance in chimpanzees can change but is usually stable. Gremlin's mother Melissa was a high-ranking female but lower in rank than Flo and later Fifi. Gremlin fell to the bottom of the pecking order after Melissa died.

Other communities of chimpanzees at Gombe Stream National Park[edit]

Within the Gombe Stream National Park live other chimpanzee communities other than the Kasakela, which also inhabit certain home ranges. The two other communities currently bordering the Kasakela community include:

One extinct community of Gombe is:

Books about the Kasakela chimpanzee community[edit]

Films about the Kasakela chimpanzee community[edit]

Further reading[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Goodall, J. (1986). The Chimpanzees of Gombe: Patterns of Behavior. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. p. 84. ISBN 0-674-11649-6. 
  2. ^ Goodall, J. (1986). The Chimpanzees of Gombe: Patterns of Behavior. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. pp. 535–539. ISBN 0-674-11649-6. 
  3. ^ Goodall, J. (1971). In the Shadow of Man. Houghton Mifflin. pp. 35–37. ISBN 0-395-33145-5. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Gombe Timeline". The Jane Goodall Institute. Retrieved 2009-02-28. [dead link]
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Flo's Family Tree". University of Minnesota JGI Center for Primate Studies. Retrieved 2009-03-03. 
  6. ^ Lickley, D., Low, S., Goodall, J. (2002). Jane Goodall's Wild Chimpanzees (IMAX). 
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