Just how smart are monkeys? Their innate curiosity leads them to try new things, but it’s their culture — the passing of information from one generation to the next — that teaches them much of what they know. Their young learn by reaching out with their hands to experience the world around them, grasping new objects, slowly piecing together an understanding of their society. They learn from their families how to find food, communicate, recognize kin, even use tools, medicine, and language. It is these familiar actions that make monkeys so fascinating to humans. We can see ourselves in their faces, our nature in their actions.
NATURE travels around the world to visit some of these fascinating primates. From tiny pygmy marmoset in South America to aggressive baboons of Africa and compassionate toque macaques in Sri Lanka, Clever Monkeys challenges many ideas about what is purely “human.” Buy the DVD. This film premiered November 9, 2008.