What separates humans from other animals, including our closest relatives? It's one of those big questions perennially posed by the evo-curious public. But until recently I seldom gave it much thought, mostly because the answers tend to get hung up on one trait or another.
There is a vast difference between opposing animal cruelty and elevating animals to the level of claimants of rights. We can support animal welfare without framing that support in terms that have customarily applied only to humans.
Chimpanzees have languished in laboratories for decades, sometimes subjected to painful experimentation and often warehoused in barren cages. But now the fate of these remarkable and highly intelligent beings has taken a monumental turn for the better.
I never intended to be a myth-buster, but I'm not disappointed, however sorry Fox is. The trip is too interesting for that, the landscape, yes, too otherwordly, far too awesome in the word's original sense before its current one-stop usage.
If you think "biodiversity hotspot" sounds like a science class or a commercial for a vacation destination, imagine this instead: The chimps living on land that Herakles Farms hopes to "develop" have as many forest friends as The Jungle Book's Mowgli.