Humans and Chimpanzees

Humansand Chimpanzees

Similaritiesand Differences between

Chimpanzeesare the close relatives of the humans, and they share aboutninety-eight percent of the DNA. The two are believed to share acommon ancestor. Actually, they all belong to the ape family. Inaddition, they share unique features in structure and mannerisms.Although they have a similar DNA sequence, they are very different intheir observable characteristics. According to John McDonald, theirdifferences are due to dissimilarity in the regulation of genes asopposed to gene sequencing.


Chimpanzeesshare 60 percent of personality traits with humans. A study taken atthe University of Texas on ninety-nine chimpanzees under closemonitoring found out they had five major personality traits undependability, extraversion, dominance, openness, and agreeableness(Mulcahy,2014).Human beings also exhibit openness, agreeableness, and extraversiontraits. The study further showed that chimpanzees possess behaviorssuch as friendliness, aggression, jealousy, and being mean, similarto human beings. Similar hand gestures are observed in both the youngones of chimpanzees and humans as they try to communicate. Researchhas found that hand gestures are the starting point of languagedevelopment. Humans eventually substitute gestures with languagewhile the chimpanzees continue with their use.

Humansare omnivorous just as the chimpanzees. They both feed on meat andplants but humans feed on meat more because they can digest it withease. Occasionally, chimpanzees hunt and kill other mammals, but theyrestrict themselves to eat insects and fruits.

Chimpanzeesand humans have some similar physical features. For instance, theyhave the same number of teeth and the same dentition pattern. Themature young ones have twenty teeth while the adults have thirty-two.In addition, Chimpanzees’ eyes are similar to those of humans. Theyboth have binocular visions that can see far as they point in onedirection. They can see and distinguish color. For this reason,chimpanzees can choose ripe fruits to feed on.

Bothhumans and chimpanzees socialize a lot. Chimpanzees socialize bygrooming each other, thus, strengthening their friendships. They alsochase and tickle each other. On the other hand, human socializethrough talking to each other. They strengthen their bonds throughphysical contacts such as a friendly shove, a hug, or a pat on theback. Both have a similar way of showing affection, that is, bykissing and hugging. According to Imuraand Tomonaga (2013),humans and chimpanzees have an estimate 50 and 200 friends andacquaintances.

Chimpanzeesare intelligent just like humans. This is proven by the fact thatthey can make decisions on which group to join, whether to beaggressive or be peaceful. They also show cooperation for asuccessful hunting spree. Their intelligence is also evident in theiruse of tools like sticks and stones.

Havingsimilar biological composition to that of humans, chimpanzees arevulnerable to most of the diseases that attack humans. This has ledto researchers to use them as specimens for their various medicalstudies.


Chimpanzees’heads are smaller as compared to the humans. This is because theyhave a smaller brain, which is about 400 cubic centimeters in volume.A human brain averages a volume of 1400 cubic centimeters, which isthrice the size of that of a chimpanzee (Wong,2014).Correspondingly, human beings have a big skull to house the brain,unlike in the chimpanzee. Besides, human have developed brain thanchimpanzee brain hence, they are more intelligent.

Further,human and chimpanzees have different physical features. Humans arebipedal walk with two limbs, whereas chimpanzees are quadruped walkon all four limbs. Human ancestors are thought to have stood uprightto reach vegetation in low- hanging trees while the chimpanzees inthe forest where trees are tall had to use their four limbs to climb(Hunt) (Mulcahy,2014).Humans have protruding chins and defined cheekbones, unlike thechimpanzees. There is a defined difference in the face of a human andthat of a chimpanzee. Humans have a flatter face while chimpanzeeshave curved face. It is believed that chimpanzees are four timesstronger than humans are. This is attributed to the attachment pointsof their muscles, which are arranged for power at the expense ofspeed. Moreover, chimpanzees have denser muscle fibers. Chimpanzeeshave a higher and flatter hip structure, unlike humans. The pelvis ofthe chimpanzee is structured to enable it walk on all four limbs andto provide a rigid structure so that bending can be achieved easily.

Chimpanzeesdo not have a well-developed spoken language like humans (Wong,2014).This has made humans depend on behavior based on their culture, aswell as more intelligent than the chimpanzees. Chimpanzees have acomplex mode of communication that depends on their social statuses.They communicate verbally through grunts, hoots, pants, screams, andother vocalizations. However, they use facial expressions andgestures as their mode of communication. On the other hand, humanshave complex vocal cords that allow them to have a wide range ofsounds. Moreover, they have muscular tongue and lips that enable themto have accurate manipulations of voices. They also have pointychins, unlike chimps that have receding chins.


Imura,T., &amp Tomonaga, M. (2013). Differences between chimpanzees andhumans in visual temporal integration.&nbspScientificreports,&nbsp3.

Mulcahy,K. (2014, February 14). 10 Comparisons Between Chimps and Humans -Listverse. Retrieved September 27, 2016, from

Wong,K. (2014, September 1). Tiny Genetic Differences between Humans andOther Primates Pervade the Genome. Retrieved September 27, 2016, from