bird intelligence

Subject: bird intelligence
From: Andrew Taylor <>
Date: Thu, 21 May 2009 11:07:08 +1000
Appended is what the researchersrs actually said in their paper.

"Individual recognition is common within species, and has been
 extensively studied through controlled experiments (13). However,
 reports of one species recognizing different individuals of
 another species are much rarer and generally restricted to social
 mammals (14-16) and livestock (17).  In birds, previous studies of
 interspecific recognition of different individuals are anecdotal
 and/or restricted to laboratory settings that lack ecological
 relevance (e.g., pigeons in boxes, pecking at projected images)
 (18-20). Likewise, honey bees can learn to forage preferentially
 under photographs of particular human faces that are associated with
 rewards (21), demonstrating the ability of bees to distinguish
 between two-dimensional, stationary images of faces, but not
 resolving whether they can learn to distinguish between actual
 humans. The primary strengths of our study are that it was done on
 wild birds and used an experimental approach to measure a behavior
 directly linked to fitness (12). Also, it used a far more challenging
 task than typical of recognition studies. Birds were not required to
 distinguish among a few individuals or images, but rather between
 one individual and thousands of others, all of whom were potential
 threats and varied in daily appearances"

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