Principal Investigator

The Great Ape Behaviour (GAB) Lab investigates the behavioural flexibility of wild great apes as they navigate their complex social and ecological environments, with a focus on variation in communication and culture. The GAB Lab joins the University of Victoria's Department of Anthropology in Fall 2021. The GAB Lab collaborates closely with the PhASE Research Group at UVic, the PanAf Programme based in Leipzig, Germany and its citizen science project Chimp&See. We are also fortunate enough to have longstanding working collaborations with multiple great ape field sites in Africa.

Robyn Nakano

Masters Student 2021-2023

I am a master’s student working under the supervision of Dr. Ammie Kalan in the Great Ape Behaviour Lab. I completed my Bachelor of Arts and Science at McGill University in 2021 with major concentrations in biology and anthropology, and a particular focus in archaeology. During my graduate studies, I am looking forward to combining my majors in an interdisciplinary project. In my research, I take a landscape approach to study the chimpanzee accumulative stone throwing behaviour from an archaeological perspective.


Lindsey Warshawski

Masters Student 2021-2023

I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology (Honours) from the University of Victoria in 2021. Currently, I am a master’s student working under the supervision of Dr. Ammie Kalan. I am interested in the evolution of, and flexibility in, primate social behaviour. My thesis focuses on social and ecological factors of chimpanzee communication. Specifically, I am investigating vocalizations pertaining to foraging and feeding behaviours of the Rekambo community of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes troglodytes) in Loango National Park, Gabon.

Miranda Gilbert

 BSc. Honours Student 2022/23

I am currently pursuing a bachelor of science (Honours) in Anthropology and Environmental Studies at the University of Victoria. I am interested in themes of how humans and wildlife share spaces, and the role primate behavioural flexibility plays in human-wildlife relationships. Under the supervision of Dr. Ammie Kalan, I will be conducting a meta-analysis of flexible behaviours adopted by primates living in areas of high human disturbance as my honour’s thesis project


Devin Hentschel

Research Assistant

I am graduating in 2022 from the University of Victoria with a major in biology (honours) and a minor in anthropology. My current honours research focuses on intersexual behaviours and sexual selection in jumping spiders, but I also have an interest in great ape behaviour, culture, and conservation. I am working in the GAB lab to help investigate the degree of laterality and preferential hand use in chimpanzees when using tools in differing contexts.

Kale Van Reekum

Research Assistant

I am a recent graduate of UVic volunteering as a research assistant for Dr. Kalan in the Great Ape Behaviour Lab. I graduated UVic with a BA in Anthropology, and throughout my degree I have had a specific focus on Palaeolithic Archaeology and Primatology. Within each discipline, I am particularly interested in hominin tool manufacture and use, as well as chimpanzee culture and tool use, respectively.

pic for Dr. K.JPG