New research shows that ravens and crows have
overtaken the planet in large part due to their brainy size.Researchers discovered that ravens and crows have larger wingspans, brains, and bodies than other Corvidae birds.
“We believe that these three combinations of traits are what enabled this group of birds colonize and diversify around the world,” Joan Garcia-Porta (postdoctoral researcher associate at Washington University, St. Louis) stated in a statement (opens in new tab). .
McCoy studies New Caledonian Crows
, as does Rutz. She and her colleagues presented an experiment to determine if tool use affects birds’ moods. New Caledonians were taught to recognize that a box at one side of a table contained more food than the box at the other. The crows were then presented with a small box at the center of the table, which indicated an indeterminate amount of meat.
Birds who had used tools recently to get food from a container approached the mystery boxes faster than birds who had not used tools. McCoy says this indicated that bird’s who used tools to retrieve food from a container were more optimistic. birds facts
She adds that this does not mean they were
“happy” but it does indicate a positive relationship between expectation and tool use.McCoy says that cognition can be fun. It allows for behavior that isn’t essential to survival.Crows might not be as smart as us (and so are they), but because they engage their intelligence sometimes just for fun. We are the same.
McCoy says that the crows McCoy studies are naturally curious. They will grab any scientific equipment they find and then fly off in the aviary. She says that young birds, especially, enjoy playing. She argues that humans are no different from birds: “Humans have enormous brains, but we use them for crossword puzzles. That’s not something that evolutionarily selected to.”
You could argue that such mental
exertion has many utilitarian benefits. It helps to keep the mind sharp and improves one’s ability to live. If there’s pleasure or unexpected results, it might be considered part of the joys of life. Like us, New Caledonian Crows have moods and memories. Expectations and strategies. They are remarkably capable of interacting with complexity.
This was possible because of evolution. However, cognition is more than a mere need. All kinds of amazing phenomena can be created by animal intelligence. A gorilla which recognizes human language. A crow capable of solving puzzles. A parrot who tells jokes.
Nature provided the notes
But, it was the brains of animals that made the music. According to them, the mind is the only limit.Marcus Maeder inserted a noise sensor in the ground for the first time on a whim. He was a sound artist and an acoustic ecologist. He was sitting in a mountain meadow when he pushed the microphone he had built into the soil.
Maeder says, “I was just curious.” He is currently working on a dissertation about the sounds of biodiversity at Switzerland’s Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich.He was not prepared for the volume of sounds that filled his headset. He said, “They were very bizarre.” “There was thrumming, chirring, and scraping. It requires a new vocabulary.