News From the Field
Wild Chimpanzees Appear Not to Regularly Experience Menopause
December 14, 2007
A pioneering study of wild chimpanzees has found that these close human relatives do not routinely experience menopause, rebutting previous studies of captive individuals which had postulated that female chimpanzees reach reproductive senescence at 35 to 40 years of age. Together with recent data from wild gorillas and orangutans, the finding suggests that human females are rare or even unique among primates in experiencing a lengthy post-reproductive lifespan.
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