All the world’s a jungle and we seem to be looking in at the wrong direction; toward the animals in the wild. This is exactly what seems to be true when you understand what science has found out recently.
So when it was revealed that the hygiene standards set by a group of chimpanzees may actually give a young teenager a lot of catching up to do, there was well- surprise as well as some revelation, truth be told.
So there’s this great compelling irony, rather a full circle when us humans have to ape apes and their clean and sorted ways of being, isn’t it? Need proof. Here’s some. It’s been researched rather extensively that the apes build forest nests that contain fewer bacteria shed by faeces and skin than most human households and that too on any part of the world.
A US PhD student recently conducted an intricate research and came up with some telling findings. It was suggested that human beings, known to be their own ecosystems are themselves directly responsible for producing 35% of the bacteria around their lair. And that the chimpanzees are actually much cleaner hygiene-wise and also excellent concocters of nests that they use to live in. So basis this, the scientists wanted a more comparative study finding the parallels between humans and apes.
And subsequently, were in for another shock when they tried to vacuum up parasitic arthropods – fleas and lice – from the chimpanzee nests. What was expected was actually to find hoards of the bloodsuckers, but collected no more than a handful. Not only was less bacteria-matter found from chimpanzee nests and constructions but in fact, highlighted the unwillingness of us commoners to realise how hygienic the chimpanzees indeed are. And this aspect of theirs; this striving for cleanliness, stems directly from their inability to follow their closest evolutionary relatives.
How rather alarming is this finding, one’s got to ask? It may sound sarcastic and outrightly ridiculous but a chimpanzee does not know the spelling of hygiene and is certain to have not used a hand sanitizer ever. The other thing is that they haven’t been groomed or told to follow a strict cleanliness regimen, unlike humans who until a certain age, at times, well beyond teenage years, continue to be saddled with “be clean and get a grip of yourself” messages from one’s family.
So in all probability, there’s this vital lesson to be learnt on this occasion. Either, we improve our ways of being. Or we get to learn on how to ape the apes better. Whichever way you see- the end result is only going to benefit us all and, without mentioning- our ecosystem.