The World’s Most Credited Chimpanzee Expert

Andrew Petlev, Reporter

Chimpanzees are a fascinating species; we can attribute many discoveries about their life in the wild to primatologist Jane Goodall. Who is Ms. Goodall, and how did she become one of the world’s most famous naturalists in her industry?

From an extremely young age, Goodall, the older of two sisters, knew she wanted to work with animals. As a child, she was highly influenced by stories like Tarzan and Dr. Dolittle. One of her most precious belongings was a stuffed chimpanzee that she still possesses today.

At age twenty-three, she first gained passage to Africa and befriended paleontologist Louis Leakey. Ms. Goodall’s friendship with Leakey helped her score a camp in Gombe Stream Game Reserve, a famous park in Tanzania.

While in Africa, Goodall corrected many previous understandings about the primates; chimpanzees are omnivores, not strict vegetarians. According to Goodall’s research, they even have the ability to create and use tools in everyday life.

While in Africa, footage was taken of Goodall’s adventures. A television documentary entitled Miss Goodall and the Wild Chimpanzees was released in 1965. Much unseen footage remained, and was released under the title Jane in 2017.

Today, a widowed Ms. Goodall lives a peaceful life writing books for children and adult audiences alike. She is founder of The Jane Goodall Institute, which promotes the protection of chimpanzees in the wild.