Animals can be wary of human presence in their natural habitat, so much so that they’ll often flee the scene, preventing scientists from gathering data with regard to their behavior in the wild. For this reason, scientists often deploy animatronic spy animals, which are essentially camera-equipped robots designed to look and behave much like the real deal.
In this video, we witness an animatronic tortoise being deployed into a troop of chimpanzees. The chimps are immediately mystified by the appearance of a random tortoise in their natural habitat, but it doesn’t take long before the curious creatures realize that something’s up.
Nearly all the chimpanzees express an interest in the animatronic tortoise; most poke at it while others sniff and lick it. But one five-year-old chimpanzee in particular appears to take more of an interest in the strange visitor than the others and wards off the rest of the chimps.
After the young chimp gets the spy tortoise all to himself, he grabs it and drags it to a safe place where he can hide it from the other troop members.