Monkeys are spotted making sharp stone ‘tools’ - just like prehistoric man

Wild monkeys have been spotted breaking flakes off stones - just like primitive humans did when making stone tools.

But while our ancestors realised that the flakes could be used as primitive knives, the monkeys seem to be hammering the stones in search of silicon powder.

But the hammering could offer an insight into how early humans hit on the idea of making tools in the first place.

Lead scientist Dr Tomos Proffitt, from Oxford University’s School of Archaeology, said:

‘Within the last decade, studies have shown that the use and intentional production of sharp-edged flakes are not necessarily linked to early humans (the genus Homo) who are our direct relatives, but instead were used and produced by a wider range of hominins.

‘However, this study goes one step further in showing that modern primates can produce archaeologically identifiable flakes and cores with features that we thought were unique to hominins.