Re: birding-aus High tech birds

To: Reg Clark <>
Subject: Re: birding-aus High tech birds
From: Atriplex <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 1999 14:24:07 +0930
Why would the sender of this amazing message 'not call it intelligence"? It
sounds like a case of "learning" to me and learning surely pre-supposes
some level of intelligence, however that is defined. I reckon it was a
pretty smart bird, by any definition!

Reg Clark wrote:

> Hi all,
> The following  interesting report appeared on the US Birdchat list:.
> >
> A couple of nights ago it was shown on Danish television
> how a pair of Barn Swallows had tought themselves to
> operate a very large garagedoor.
> The workers at a factory had been wondering how the
> 10 by 8 foot door seemingly opened by itself every now
> and then.  A guard was called, and while he was looking,
> suddenly the door slowly swung up.  Nobody went in or out.
> It took a while for the guys to figure out why, and a crew
> from the televison was called.
> It was filmed (at different angles and slow motion) that the
> Barn Swallow hovered right in front of the electronic eye
> and cut the infrared beam. As soon as the door began to
> move, the Swallow swooped down and under the door to
> get to the nest inside the large garage to feed the chicks.
> It performed this trick so elegantly. Came flying in with
> insects, hovered a second or two, and Open Sesame, the
> door opened.
> I wonder how this little bird has been able to make the
> connection cutting an invisible light beam some three or
> four  feet above the ground? It clearly flew to the same spot
> very close to the electronic eye each time.
> I will not call it intelligence, but it surely was not born
> knowing about high tech, was it?
> Ole Post
> Hillerod, Denmark
> Reg Clark
> 11 Carmen St
> St Ives NSW 2075
> Australia
> <>
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