The bonobo (Pan paniscus) has captured the attention of conservationists and scientists in recent decades. Like its chimpanzee cousin, the bonobo shares over 98% of its DNA with humans. Unlike chimpanzees, bonobo society tends to be more peaceful and bonobo groups are led by females.
Wild bonobos are only found in the forests south of the Congo River system in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Classified as endangered, bonobos are threatened by poaching and habitat loss. Bonobos are also rare in captivity; only seven accredited zoological facilities in North America house these rare great apes.
For more than three decades, the Zoological Society of Milwaukee has advanced the conservation of wild and captive bonobos. To learn about the Zoological Society’s award-winning Bonobo & Congo Biodiversity Initiative (BCBI) and the Bonobo Species Survival Plan (SSP), please follow these links: