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Contact: Mary Beth O'Leary
Cell Press

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Caption: The vocal lip-smacks that geladas use in friendly encounters have surprising similarities to human speech, according to a study reported in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on April 8th. The geladas, which live only in the remote mountains of Ethiopia, are the only nonhuman primate known to communicate with such a speech-like, undulating rhythm. Calls of other monkeys and apes are typically one or two syllables and lack those rapid fluctuations in pitch and volume.

Credit: Current Biology, Bergman

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Related news release: Rare primate's vocal lip-smacks share features of human speech

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