Art monkeys have a unique style

Zoo animals get bored sometimes. Caregivers try to prevent this by challenging them with all kinds of games or tasks. For example, they hide food or create a maze. Monkeys like orangutans can do this the same way we occupy our children: by having them draw a picture.

Between 2020 and 2016, five female orangutans at Japan’s Tama Zoo combined collected nearly 1,500 drawings. The caretakers kept these drawings all along, and now they are studied by biologists. She said the monkeys did not draw the drawings randomly. Each orangutan has his own personal style, with favorite colors and patterns.

Molly was distinguished from the other four orangutans by more complex drawings, which varied according to season and age.

The scientists noted in their analysis in the journal the animals Also note that the graphics reflect the mood swings of the orangutan. In spring, for example, one of the monkeys often uses purple as the dominant color, while in summer and winter they prefer green. When one of the orangutans was pregnant in the group, she chose red as the overtone in her drawings.

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