Bonobos (Pan paniscus) are found only in DR Congo. They live in fission-fusion societies of up to 100 individuals, usually splitting into small groups when searching for food during the day and coming back together to sleep at night. The bonobos’ generally peaceful, egalitarian, and cooperative society is attributed to the evolution of a highly complex social system. Females bonobos are dominant in bonobo society, with females forming tight bonds against males through same-sex socio-sexual contact that is thought to limit aggression. Fruit makes up half of bonobos’ diet, but they also eat vegetation and occasionally supplement their diet with insects, larvae, earthworms, eggs, and small mammals.

KEY STATISTICS

RANGE STATES

POPULATION

15,000-20,000

CONSERVATION STATUS

Endangered

GRASP & IUCN (2018). Report to the CITES Standing Committee on the Status of Great Apes. UN Environment, Great Apes Survival Partnership, Nairobi and International Union for Conservation of Nature, Gland.