I took this photograph (above) through the window of an abandoned home in a village in western Uganda. As I watched, one wild chimpanzee entered the yard, then another. Though they stared hard at the windows, I knew they couldn’t see me behind the mirrored glass—and I was glad.
During past fieldwork, I’d been around scores of wild chimpanzees and shadowed them at close range. Yet until this photo assignment in 2017, I had never tried to hide from chimps. I had never even imagined writing such a sentence.
That was before I met the Semata family and saw firsthand how depleted land and forest, and scarce food and crops, can unleash competition between primates, those inside houses and those outside.