What Do Chimpanzees Eat?

Chimpanzees eat both plants and animals for their food, but they rely mostly on insects, eggs, bark and nuts. Chimpanzees will eat small animals and other monkeys when they want meat.

Chimpanzees hunt together and share their spoils from the hunt as a group. A chimpanzee is able to remember where it has hidden its food and where food was available the year before as well as when certain foods are ripe in different areas of the forest.

There is mounting evidence that chimpanzees are able to discern that specific plants help them with problems such as intestinal parasites and upset stomachs. Studies show that chimpanzees eat medicinal plants when they have problems such as these.

Jane Goodall was the first person to observe chimpanzees using tools that they had made themselves to eat food. Chimpanzees have used rocks as hammers to help open nuts, and they have used leaves as sponges and napkins while eating. They have also fashioned sticks to get honey out of beehives and spears to kill other small animals for meat. Chimpanzees are perfectionists when it comes to using various tools and will spend up to ten years learning how to pound open nuts.