Cover image for Mahale : a photographic encounter with chimpanzees
Mahale : a photographic encounter with chimpanzees
Höfer, Angelika.
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
Mahale. English
Publication Information:
New York : Sterling Pub. Co., [2000]

Physical Description:
160 pages : color illustrations ; 24 x 28 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QL737.P96 H5913 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

On Order



They are our closest relatives--and this large-scale, eye-opening book, with a preface by the world's most esteemed expert on the subject, opens a window onto the endlessly engrossing, sometimes dangerous, and often entertaining world of chimpanzees. This particular group lives in the forests and rolling hills of Mahale, a protected national park, accessible only by air or ferry, that runs 100 miles along the shore of Lake Tanganyika. For more than 15 years, Dr. Michael Huffman has devoted his life to studying this community, watching the families' interaction with each other and charting a range of fascinating behaviors never seen before in other chimps, from a grooming hand clasp to licking pebbles on the beach. He now guides a top photographer and biologist on a safari through this territory, where they-and we-can encounter chimps first-hand. The three combine to produce a remarkable "chimp portrait" that's an unprecedented mixture of science, art, and poetry. Aided by haikus, magnificent photographs, and charcoal drawings, Dr. Huffman chronicles the intricacies of chimp life and relationships, and the mortal danger they face from poachers. Among the cast of unforgettable characters you'll meet: Masudi, a low-ranking male who stays safely near humans during tense moments in the chimp tribe; his mother, Wantendle; and the protective, caring female Gwekulo among them. Here they are, staring out with their intelligent gazes; hugging each other, tending lovingly to their babies; snuggling into branches heavy with fruit; and swinging playfully from tree to tree. Our affinity for these mammals was celebrated in Dian Fossey's best seller, Gorillas in the Mist ; Mahale will ensure they will stay forever in our mind--and spur us to help preserve the species for generations to come.
"In this wonderful traveller's journal...Angelika Hofer's expressive narration even enables us to hear the sounds of the jungle and G#65533;nter Ziesler's splendid photographs let us sense the mysterious light of the African jungle by Lake Tanganyika even from afar...Dr. Michael A. Huffman...describes isolated details from the lives of the chimpanzees. This all combines to produce a rousing adventure and a better understanding of our nearest relatives. This book should also encourage the reader to participate in the effort to ensure the survival of our severely threatened cousins."--Dr. Jane Goodall.

Author Notes

Dr. Jane Goodall is one of the world's most recognized experts on chimp behavior, and the recipient of a Ph.D. from Cambridge University. Stephen Jay Gould referred to her work with these wonderful animals as "one of the Western world's great scientific achievements," while critics have called her writing "enthralling" (Boston Globe) as well as "vivid and...moving" (The New York Times). She resides in Tanzania.

Dr. Michael A. Huffman is a primatologist at the Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University and Adjunct Associate Professor at the Department of Anthropology, University of Colorado, Denver. In 1991 he founded together with several colleagues the C.H.I.M.P.P. Group, which is devoted to research into the use of medicinal plants by chimpanzees.

Acclaimed wildlife photographer G#65533;nter Ziesler does more than merely capture reality with his camera; he "paints" subtly and expressively with light to create images that are truly dynamic works of art.

Biologist Angelika Hofer became famous with her film and book Diary of a Mother Goose, and with her partner G#65533;nther Ziesler has produced numerous publications--including books translated into six languages.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Mahale is a protected national park in Tanzania, home of lush forests, open savannas, the isolated Mahale Mountains, and wild chimpanzees. It is located roughly 100 miles from Gombe, the reserve where Jane Goodall did her pioneering work. In 1994 and 1996 author Hofer and her crew worked at Mahale, resulting in this lyrical journal of two four-week periods spent with the chimpanzees. Following the study group of about 90 chimps as they split up and reform into subgroups, the author chronicles the daily lives of the chimps and their researchers. Much time is spent feeding, and the author was lucky enough to witness several hunts, where two species of monkey and one small antelope were killed. Descriptions of feeding, playing, grooming, and other elements of chimpanzee behavior unfold in the text and in the accompanying evocative photographs and illustrations. A nice complement to Jane Goodall's works, this recording of an intimate visit with our closest relatives is recommended for libraries with large natural history collections. --Nancy Bent

Publisher's Weekly Review

Charming Chimps and Puppy Love For more than 15 years, primatologist Michael A. Huffman devoted himself to studying the chimpanzee community in Mahale, a 100-mile-long national park in Tanzania. Collaborating with biologist Angelika Hofer and wildlife photographer Gnter Ziesler in Mahale: A Photographic Encounter with Chimpanzees, Huffman presents a personal and moving tribute to the many animal friends he has madeÄsuch as Bembe, the clan's third-ranked male, and the elderly Gwekulo, who was not able to bear any children but loves to play with them. Foreword by Jane Goodall. Full-color photos throughout. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Table of Contents

Dr. Jane Goodall
Forewordp. 4
Mahalep. 7
First Encountersp. 21
Hunting Scenesp. 35
On the Way Southp. 55
Coming Backp. 71
In the Palm Grovep. 87
A Forest Pharmacyp. 107
Time for Farewellp. 131
Indexp. 160