African chimps decline at an alarming rate
Researchers found about 90% fewer nests in the area where they often breed and live, and they are concluding that the chimp population has declined from about 12,000 to about 1,200.
Details of the survey's findings appear in the journal Current Biology.
Ivory Coast, thought to be one of the last strongholds for the species (Pan troglodytes verus), was believed to be home to between 8,000 and 12,000 individuals.
This estimate was primarily based on a nationwide survey carried out in 1989 and 1990.
Urgent action is now required to prevent the animal from disappearing from this part of the world completely. Most of the chimpanzees that were counted in 1990, no longer could be found today.
As the human population in the Ivory Coast increases, poaching and deforestation become only bigger problems. The chimpanzees are hunted for food and then their habitats are destroyed anyway.
The Tai National Park is currently the only location in the area that fully protects the chimps from poaching and more needs to be done like this to keep them safe.
Chimps are human's closest living relatives.