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Why are Chimpanzees Endangered (Reasons & Threats)

Chimpanzees are endangered species of primates, sharing about 98% of their genes with humans, which is why they are our closest relatives. In the past, there were over 1,000,000 chimpanzees living in at least 25 countries in Africa. However, their numbers have dramatically decreased to about 100,000-200,000 chimpanzees left in the wild today, and they are only found in about 6 countries in Africa.

Are Chimpanzees Endangered

Chimpanzees are endangered due to habitat loss, which occurs because of human encroachment into chimpanzee habitats. This includes clearing land for farming, settlement, industrial use, mining, and more. Additionally, chimpanzees are being endangered by poaching. Sometimes, chimpanzees fall into traps set for other animals in the forest, such as small antelopes, resulting in a decrease in their numbers due to injuries caused by the traps.

The high demand for bush meat has also led to the endangerment of chimpanzees. Many wealthy individuals consider it prestigious to eat bush meat, and restaurants selling it generate substantial profits, encouraging further hunting of chimpanzees and other wild animals.

Young chimpanzees are also endangered as they are exported abroad by wealthy individuals for use as pets or in private animal zoos. During the capture of young chimpanzees, their mothers are often killed because they can become extremely aggressive and pose a threat to their captors.

Chimpanzees are further endangered by natural hazards like diseases, such as Ebola and other infections. Chimps are vulnerable to diseases that spread within a group at a high rate due to their weak immune systems. Logging and mining companies have also constructed roads in chimpanzee habitat areas, making it easier for poachers to access chimpanzees.

The best way to contribute to the chimpanzee population’s conservation is by not buying chimpanzee pets and refraining from consuming chimpanzee bush meat. You can also support chimpanzee institutes that raise orphaned chimpanzees or visit chimpanzees in their natural habitat. The money used for buying permits is utilized to aid in chimpanzee conservation efforts.

Chimpanzee tracking can be done in various African locations:

  • Uganda chimpanzee tracking is possible in Kibale Forest National Park, Budongo Forest Reserve, Kyambura Gorge, and Kalinzu Forest.
  • Rwanda chimpanzee tracking can be enjoyed in Nyungwe Forest National Park and Cyamundongo Forest.
  • In Congo, chimpanzee tracking can be undertaken in Virunga National Park.
  • In Tanzania, Gombe Stream National Park offers opportunities for chimpanzee tracking.

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