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Amiable male chimps live longer, study finds
“Studying the personality of chimps – one of our closest biological relatives – suggests that the quality of our social relationships can significantly impact our lives.” 

Social relationships ‘can significantly impact our lives’

Male chimps that get along well with others tend to live longer than their less amiable peers, according to new research.

A team of international scientists studied more than 500 captive chimpanzees to find out which aspects of personality are associated with longevity.

Personality and survival data indicates that evolution has favoured more affable males. Those who formed strong social bonds by being sensitive, protective and co-operative, outlived their more aggressive counterparts.

Researchers also found that female chimps that demonstrated openness - that is, those that exposed and adapted to change more readily - were more likely to live longer.

Contrary to studies on humans and other primates, being more extroverted, conscientious or neurotic had no impact on chimp longevity.

Extroversion is often associated with longer life in other non-human primates, while in humans, conscientiousness and neuroticism are linked with longer and shorter lifespans respectively.

These findings, which were published in eLife, suggest that links between personality and lifespan in humans may not be entirely explained by inherent characteristics - but lifestyle may play a greater role.

Drew Altschul, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Edinburgh, commented: “Studying the personality of chimps – one of our closest biological relatives – suggests that the quality of our social relationships can significantly impact our lives.” 

Image © Lincoln Park Zoo

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ZSL London Zoo shares animal X-rays

News Story 1
 A selection of X-ray images showing the inner workings of frogs, turtles, snakes and geckos have been shared by veterinary surgeons at ZSL London Zoo.

Taken as part of a routine health check, the images have been shared as part of ‘Vets in Action’ week - a hand’s on role-playing experience for children that explores the life of a zoo vet.

ZSL London Zoo veterinary nurse Heather Mackintosh said: “It’s great to be able to share the work that goes on behind the scenes at the Zoo to keep our residents in tip-top condition – and our visitors are always amazed to find out more about their favourite animals.” 

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Vets in developing nations given free access to BSAVA’s online library

BSAVA has teamed up with the WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to offer vets in developing nations free access to its online library.

The Association’s ‘Foundation Collection’ is comprised of more than 70 hours of articles, lectures and book chapters covering topics such as basic handling skills, working on a budget and emergency triage. Some of the countries set to benefit include Albania, Georgia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania.

Nicolette Hayward, of BSAVA International Affairs Committee said: “Our mission is to promote excellence in small animal practice through education and science, so we are delighted to work with WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to share these high-quality resources to the veterinary profession in low and middle-income countries.”