Fauna Foundation Chimpanzee Sue Ellen

Commentary in Animal Sentience

Can a nonhuman commit suicide?

This question is addressed in a target article in the journal Animal Sentience with commentary penned by me.

Claims are often made about behaviors being unique to humans; the evidence usually shows they are not. Sign language studies on chimpanzees may provide a useful model for comparative studies of suicide. A productive approach to comparative studies is to focus on observable behaviors rather than getting lost in the pitfalls of vague definitions and changing measures.

The author of the target article, David Pena-Guzman, participated in the Fauna Chimpopolis activities last year.