Chimpanzees (sometimes called chimps) are one of two exclusively African species of great ape that are currently extant. Native to sub-Saharan Africa, both are currently found in the Congo jungle. Classified in the genus Pan, they were once considered to be one species. However, since 1928, they have been recognized as two distinct species: the common chimpanzee (P. troglodytes) live north of the Congo River and the bonobo (P. paniscus) who live south. In addition, P. troglodytes is divided into four subspecies, while P. paniscus has none. Based on genome sequencing, the two extant Pan species diverged around one million years ago. The most obvious differences are that chimpanzees are somewhat larger, more aggressive and male dominated, while the bonobos are more gracile, peaceful, and female dominated.

Their hair is typically black or brown. Males and females differ in size and appearance. Both chimps and bonobos are some of the most social great apes, with social bonds occurring among individuals in large communities. Fruit is the most important component of a chimpanzee's diet; however, they will also eat vegetation, bark, honey, insects and even other chimps or monkeys. They can live over 30 years in both the wild and captivity.

Chimpanzees and bonobos are equally humanity's closest living relatives. As such, they are among the largest-brained, and most intelligent of primates; they use a variety of sophisticated tools and construct elaborate sleeping nests each night from branches and foliage. They have both been extensively studied for their learning abilities. There may even be distinctive cultures within populations. Field studies of Pan troglodytes were pioneered by primatologist Jane Goodall. Both Pan species are considered to be endangered as human activities have caused severe declines in the populations and ranges of both species. Threats to wild panina populations include poaching, habitat destruction, and the illegal pet trade. Several conservation and rehabilitation organisations are dedicated to the survival of Pan species in the wild.

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