The mystery of why gorillas beat their chests has finally been solved, and it turns out that they’re just doing it for fun.
Gorillas are well known for their chest-beating displays, which they often do when they are excited or agitated. For many years, scientists have speculated about the purpose of this behavior, with some suggesting that it might be a way of showing dominance, or of attracting mates.
However, a new study has found that chest-beating in gorillas is actually just a form of play. The research, which is published in the journal Scientific Reports, was undertaken by a team of scientists from the University of Zurich and the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
The team observed a group of wild gorillas in Rwanda over the course of two years, and found that chest-beating was most common among young males. The behavior was often seen during play sessions between two or more gorillas, and didn’t seem to serve any particular purpose other than providing entertainment.
This is the first time that chest-beating in gorillas has been shown to be a form of play, rather than a means of communication. The findings suggest that gorillas use chest-beating as a way to bonding and socialize with each other, much like we do with our own children.
So next time you see a gorilla beating its chest, don’t be alarmed – it’s just trying to have some fun.