The smartest animals in the world: crows, goats, octopuses – and not only
None of the representatives of the animal world can pass the IQ test , come to the algebra exam or write an essay on a given topic. Nevertheless, some of the species amaze scientists with their mental abilities. And if you thought that the smartest animals are dolphins, then prepare to be surprised.
Chimpanzees are our closest relatives. We share almost 99% of DNA with them , and therefore it does not seem surprising that they have a small share of our brain power. In a 2007 study, scientists suggested that adult chimpanzees, chimpanzee adolescents, and university students share the same cognitive tests. As a result, it was found that students and adult chimpanzees almost equally remembered the numbers appearing on the touch screens, while the chimpanzees-teenagers went around both these groups. The researchers suggested that chimpanzees use so-called photographic memory, which allows a person to recall images with the utmost precision.
Scientists have long assumed that goats are much smarter than one might think, looking at their modest behavior. Finally, a group of researchers in Australia decided to test their intellect in one interesting experiment. Especially for this was created a device for the supply of fruit, in which, in order to receive food, the goats had to use their teeth, dragging down the rope, activating the lever. As a result, nine of the twelve goats coped with the task after four attempts. And, when the experiment was repeated after 10 months, most of the animals still remembered what to do.
Anyone who has ever interacted with an elephant knows that these animals are very intelligent. But how much? Numerous studies have shown that enough, say, to understand the difference between languages ??or to determine whether it is a man, woman or child. This was verified during the experiment, where researchers lost to African elephants recording conversations of several groups of people, one of which belonged to a tribe that traditionally preys on these animals. When the elephants heard the hunters, they always retreated to a safe distance, but when they heard the voices of any other group, they remained in place. At the same time, they reacted more actively to men who hunt them, rather than women and children.
One way in which scientists measure the intelligence of animals is a self-perception test, designed to determine whether an animal can recognize itself in a mirror. To do this, researchers place a colored marking on the animal’s body: if the animal, in front of the mirror, attempts to remove this marking from itself, touch or scratch it, the test is considered successful. Many do not pass this test, because when they see their reflection in the mirror, they think they see a kindred before them. But if the researchers placed markings on dolphins , these animals always knew for sure that the label belonged to them.
It’s hard to imagine that a crow can be as smart as we are. But she, quite possibly, is even smarter. In one study, scientists suggested crows and children the same puzzle: the toy is on the surface of the water inside a tall glass, but too narrow for a bird to place a beak there, and a small child to hold a hand. Children under the age of 8 in this case are usually at a dead end, not seeing the opportunity to get a toy. However, in the same case, the crows do not bother – they start throwing stones into a glass, and do this until the toy rises.
Most invertebrates do not have intelligence, but researchers believe that if you choose the smartest of them, then it definitely will be octopuses . In one experiment, for example, scientists looked at whether an octopus could distinguish two different people. Before that, two people spent some time with an octopus, one of them being cute and friendly, and the second – cold and even spiteful. After a while, when the same two people appeared again in front of the octopus, he preferred to communicate with someone who was kind to him, completely ignoring the one who behaved detached at the first acquaintance.