National Geographic : 2010 Feb
• Conservation Society (WCS). Morgan has spent the better part of the past ten years liv- ing with Sanz in the Goualougo Triangle study area, a pristine 147-square-mile nub of lowland forest overlapping the Ndoki and Goualougo Rivers in northern Republic of the Congo. He and Sanz were awed by the close encounter, but they began to wonder when it might end. It was getting dark. Where were the chimps go- ing to nest? "Sure enough, they built their nests directly over our tents," says Morgan. "I was like, is is great! But our trackers were like, No way, man, this is very bad news." All night long, the chimps hollered from the trees, shook branches, urinated and defecated on the tents, and hurled sticks at the team. Nobody slept. At daybreak the chimps came down from their perches and watched from the forest oor as the group built up the re and made breakfast. en, quietly, one by one, the chimps slunk away and van- ished into the thick underbrush. W of the "curious" chimps of northern Congo---uncorrupt- ed by misdealings with humans and apparently fully ignorant of our exis- tence---were rst reported in this magazine in Ndoki Goualougo River Goualougo T riangle RESEARCH BASE CAMP Bomassa NOUABALÉ-NDOKI NATIONAL PARK DZANGA-NDOKI N.P. LOBÉKÉ N.P. NOUABALÉ-NDOKI NATIONAL PARK DZANGA-NDOKI N.P. LOBÉKÉ N.P. CONGO CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC CAMEROON CONGO CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC CAMEROON MAIN MAP EQUATOR DEM. REP. OF THE CONGO GABON CAMEROON CEN. AF. REP. CONGO M. BRODY DITTEMORE; LISA R. RITTER, NG STAFF COMPOSITE MAP CONTAINS 2003 AND 2008 DATA. SOURCES: ERIC LONSDORF, LINCOLN PARK ZOO, CHICAGO; NADINE LAPORTE AND JARED STABACH, WOODS HOLE RESEARCH CENTER River or wetland Study area Logging roads Te rmite nests National park Chimp foraging and nesting quality medium low high AFRICA CONGO 0mi 4 0km 4 Logging destroys insect nests where chimps use their tool sets. Timber operations flank the 147-square-mile Goualougo Triangle study area. Logging here meets the industry's highest sustainability standards, but researchers fear that even careful tree harvests will disturb chimp populations.