QUIRKY WORLD ... Booze-loving apes may help explain why we love a tipple

GUINEA: Scientists have discovered a group of booze-loving apes who may hold the key to why humans enjoy drinking alcohol. 

QUIRKY WORLD ... Booze-loving apes may help explain why we love a tipple

Experts say they have found the first empirical evidence of “long-term and recurrent ingestion of ethanol” among apes in nature.

They observed wild chimpanzees in the town of Bossou in Guinea, west Africa, over 17 years and watched as the primates drank fermented palm sap using a leafy tool as a sponge.

The chimpanzees consumed the alcoholic beverage, often in large quantities, despite an alcohol presence of up to 6.9% ABV the equivalent of a strong beer, according to a study published by the Royal Society.

The report’s authors say the results support the idea that the last common ancestor of living African apes and modern humans were “not averse to ingesting foods containing ethanol.” They added that the findings should also prompt further tests of the “drunken monkey hypothesis”, which proposes that human attraction to alcohol may derive from dependence of primate ancestors on ripe and fermenting fruit.

Droning on

ENGLAND:

The Ministry of Defence has found a new use for drones — not spying on the enemy, but checking warships while they are being serviced.

The Royal Navy has been trialling an unmanned aerial vehicle on the Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond at Portsmouth Naval Base using high-definition stills and video to assess the state of the warship’s vast exterior.

The remote-controlled aircraft removes the need for costly scaffolding, cherry-pickers and ladders, meaning surveys can be carried out in hours rather than days, or even weeks, as they can reach inaccessible areas even while at sea.

On a high

USA:

Colorado is full of all-inclusive ranch resorts where guests hike, fish, throw horseshoes, and roast marshmallows. This one has a new offering — smoking pot.

The 170-acre CannaCamp opening in Durango in south west Colorado calls itself the nation’s first cannabis-friendly ranch resort. Guests will not be given marijuana, because that violates state law. Instead, guests can bring their own and use it while there. In addition to horseshoes and hiking, guests are offered yoga sessions and workshops on marijuana cultivation.

Clever costume

USA:

A Vermont man has escaped jury duty — by getting dismissed for wearing a prisoner costume.

James Lowe of Barnet was released from jury duty on Tuesday when he showed up to court wearing a black-and-white-striped jumpsuit and beanie.

The Caledonian Record reported that Lowe showed up on time and joined other prospective jurors before the start of the selection process. Deputies directed him to an empty courtroom to meet with the judge, who told him to leave. Lowe said the judge told him he could’ve been found in contempt of court. Lowe said he was happy to be released because of work and family obligations.

Tortoise tale

USA:

Frank, a 50lb pet tortoise, has been found in western Michigan after a two-day search.

Owner Bradley Clark told The Grand Rapids Press he got a call from someone who said the tortoise was munching on flowers on Tuesday, 11km from home in Kent County’s Ada Township.

The female African tortoise disappeared on Sunday from Clark’s yard in Plainfield Township, near Grand Rapids. Clark believes the 12-year-old tortoise escaped through a damaged part of the fence.

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