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Among the Great Apes : Adventures on the Trail of Our Closest Relatives - Paul Raffaele

Among the Great Apes

Adventures on the Trail of Our Closest Relatives

By: Paul Raffaele

eBook | 15 December 2023

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"Raffaele spins riveting tales of his mission to visit every species and subspecies of great ape in its natural habitat." —Discover magazine

Award winning adventure journalist Paul Raffaele's Among the Great Apes is the first book in over a decade—and possibly the last ever—to take its readers into the lives of our charismatic cousins in their native habitats. Humans have long felt a deep attraction to the great apes: bonobos, chimpanzees, orangutans, and gorillas. We see a reflection of ourselves in their faces, mannerisms, and interactions with kin. But we also look to them for contrast. Part of how we define ourselves as human rests with recognizing the differences between us and the great apes, in spite of the substantial amounts of DNA we share.

Many great primatologists have dedicated their lives to the observation and study of these species in their natural habitats. Unfortunately, many of these sheltering places no longer exist. The great apes live in some of the most volatile regions on our planet, lands plagued by civil unrest, poverty, environmental degradation, and corrupt governments. In this book, Raffaele goes into the wild to see how our closest relatives are faring today. He takes us through isolated jungles and misty mountain forests, sharing wonderfully intimate observations of ape life paired with the most current research about their behavior.

Raffaele, called the "last of the great, old-fashioned adventure writers" by the Washington Post, introduces us to leading conservationists and researchers working to save and study the apes. But best of all, he gets up close to these amazing animals. He describes orangutans fashioning umbrellas from long leaves, a young chimpanzee mothering a "baby" log, and the bonobos' lively ritual of swinging like gymnasts through the treetops before building elaborate nests to sleep in. Moving from Borneo to the Congo, Among the Great Apes brings us to the natural habitats of all the species and subspecies of the great apes—a trip possible for perhaps the last time.

"A powerful account of the author's journey into our planet's last remaining gorilla communities." —The Ecologist

"Fantastic. . . . Anyone who cares about animals will benefit hugely from reading it." —Shaun Ellis, star of Animal Planet's Living with the Wolfman and author of The Man Who Lives with Wolves

"Profound and important . . . Raffaele shows us how amazing interesting and complex great apes are." —David Greer, coordinator, World Wildlife Fund's African Great Apes Program

Industry Reviews
"A fantastic book that's also a really emotional ride. Anyone who cares about animals will benefit hugely from reading it." -Shaun Ellis, star of Animal Planet's Living With the Wolfman and author of The Man Who Lives With Wolves
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