Homo Fabricator

Is Tool Use Monkey Business or Unique to Humans?

If you walk through a home improvement store these days, you might say to yourself, “I wish I had all those tools.” Sophisticated tools make building and repair jobs easier. They also reveal the ingenuity of the toolmakers.

Humans are not the only creatures to manufacture and use tools. Biologists have long observed chimpanzees, orangutans, monkeys, ravens, and crows, among others, making and using wood and/or stone tools. Anthropologists describe similar tool use among Neanderthals, Denisovans, and Homo erectus. What do the quality and kinds of these ancient tools, compared and contrasted with tools today, tell us about the history and nature of humanity vis-à-vis other primate species?

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is an astrophysicist and the founder and president of the science-faith think tank Reasons to Believe (RTB).

This article originally appeared in Salvo, Issue #65, Summer 2023 Copyright © 2024 Salvo | www.salvomag.com https://salvomag.com/article/salvo65/homo-fabricator

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