"For the first time, biologists have documented gorillas in the wild using simple tools, such as poking a stick in a swampy pool of water to check its depth.
Until now, scientists had seen gorillas use tools only in captivity. Among the great apes, tool use in the wild was thought to be a survival skill reserved for smaller chimpanzees and orangutans.
The research in the Republic of Congo's rainforests was led by Thomas Breuer of the Wildlife Conservation Society at the Bronx Zoo, which released details of his study. Breuer is in Africa and was not immediately available for an interview.
'This is a truly astounding discovery,' he said in a statement. 'Tool usage in wild apes provides us with valuable insights into the evolution of our own species and the abilities of other species.'"