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The teenage gorilla with a smartphone addiction

Employees at a Chicago zoo have been forced to take new measures to reduce the screen time of a teenage gorilla that appears to have become addicted to visitors’ phones.

Amare, a resident of the Lincoln Park Zoo, shares an enclosure with three other “bachelor” monkeys. Zoo employees fear he’s missing out on important developmental advances that could make him a target for bullying.

Gorillas his age often show aggression “to find out who’s boss,” but Amare “was glued to a cell phone” when one of his roommates recently “jumped at him” and “didn’t seem to realize” what was happening, he reported Chicago Sun Times. The zoo feared the problem could get worse without intervention.

“Unfortunately, it seems that phone addiction can be a self-perpetuating problem,” he said metro. The more Amare shows interest in visitors’ cell phones, the more they want to take pictures of him and show him their camera roll.

NPRLeila Fadel, Morning Edition presenter of ‘s Morning Edition, pointed out that many primates at the Lincoln Park Zoo “use tablets regularly as part of training and cognition studies.

“However, they stick to about five minutes a day in these activities,” she added, while Amare has spent “hours” looking at phone screens.

Now, staff are taking “gentle but firm” steps to reduce Amare’s screen time, Metro continued.

“Amare is particularly at risk because his favorite spot in the enclosure is right next to the glass wall,” reports the Chicago Sun Times. Now staff have set up a rope to keep visitors at a greater distance from the partition, “and will intervene gently – and explain the situation – if it appears Amare is still being distracted by bright screens”.

Excessive screen time for “human adolescents has been linked to physical and mental health risks, as multiple studies have shown, and the pandemic has dramatically increased children’s time on the phone,” he said news week.

Stephen Ross, director of the zoo’s center for the study and conservation of monkeys, “said the reasons for limiting screen time for human and gorilla teenagers are not very different,” the news site added.

Scientists say they have already seen positive changes in Amare’s behavior since the “buffer zone” was established.

“Amare realizes that it’s not really worth it for him to sit in that corner and wait for someone to come and show him their phone,” Ross said ChicagoTribune.

https://www.theweek.co.uk/news/world-news/us/956465/the-teenage-gorilla-with-an-addiction-to-smartphones The teenage gorilla with a smartphone addiction

Fry Electronics Team

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