Can You Catch a Yawn from a Chimpanzee?


Make sure you don’t scroll down to the photos below unless you have a pillow and a blanket ready for a nap, because these images will make you sleeepppy.

A new research study out of Lund University, Sweden showed for the first time that chimpanzees catch yawns from humans. Research on yawning has been used to show empathy in species, or the ability to feel what those around you are feeling. To study this, researchers sat around the Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Sierra Leone, yawning a whole lot in front of 33-orphaned chimpanzees. The study found that yawning is contagious, the researchers successfully made a lot of chimps look pretty sleepy, no word yet if there was an increase in nap time for both researchers and chimpanzees.

yawning chimpanzee

If humans can make chimpanzees yawn, what about animals making humans yawn? Check out these yawning animals and see if they make you feel sleepy.

cape fox vulpes chama
Cape fox (Vulpes chama)
fox yawning
Fox. Photo credit: Tambako Jaguar
japanese snow monkey yawning
Japanese snow monkey
leopard yawn
leopard. Photo credit: Flickr user Knar Bedian
lion yawning
wolf yawning
Wolf. Photo credit: Flick user breenzanemom
yawing baby monkey
Baby monkey
yawning polar bear
Polar bear
yawning red panda
Red panda. Photo credit: Flickr User hizonic
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