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Digital Subscriptions > Travel Africa > October-December 2019 > PRIMAL INSTINCT

PRIMAL INSTINCT

Nearly 60 years after Jane Goodall first arrived in Gombe to study chimpanzees, we return to Tanzania’s western mountain reserves. What is the legacy of her work? What is the wildlife experience really like? What are the prospects for Tanzania’s chimp populations?

“And as an added bonus I get to stay in her house!” exclaimed Doctor Anthony Collins, Director of Baboon Research at the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) in Gombe, and a lifelong friend and colleague of Goodall herself.

The iconic black and white photo of Jane Goodall holding her binoculars as she scans the landscape from the ‘Peak’ for a glimpse of beloved chimpanzees in Gombe nearly 60 years ago has always been a great inspiration for me. And clearly Dr Collins feels the same.

“It is a great privilege to work here, continuing the amazing research started by Jane back in July 1960, and to have worked alongside her since I first came here in 1972,” he says. “We are now seeing the third generation of chimps here at Gombe and the Gombe Stream Research Centre is now one of the world’s longest running studies of any wild animal species.”

Jane’s mission was: “To further understand humans by studying the region’s wild chimpanzees”. Her findings were: “That we as human beings have far more in common with the rest of the animal kingdom than previously thought”.

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