Scientists decided to test the reaction of chimpanzees to corpses. To do this, they selected six adult chimpanzees between the ages of 24 and 48. The primates were placed in a small room and shown a cardboard box with the carcass of a bird – a gray-headed bunting (Emberiza spodocephala) or stuffed gardening glove. Under the box was a plastic bucket with holes, from which the smell of water, ammonia, or putrescine was spread using a fan.
Chimpanzees were given various object-smell combinations and their reactions were studied. As it turned out, for primates there was no difference between a bird and a glove. They didn’t like the smell of putrescine. They tried to avoid the subject when they smelled.
Interestingly, the chimpanzee didn’t find ammonia disgusting. But people don’t like it as much as putrescine.