Crows Really Are Mind-Readers | Wired Science | -
Crows Really Are Mind-Readers | Wired Science |
"Are crows mind readers? Recent studies have suggested that the birds hide food because they think others will steal it — a complex intuition that has been seen in only a select few creatures. Some critics have suggested that the birds might simply be stressed out, but new research reveals that crows may be gifted after all." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"Cracks first began forming in the crow mind-reading hypothesis last year. One member of a research team from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands spent 7 months in bird cognition expert Nicola Clayton’s University of Cambridge lab in the United Kingdom studying Western scrub jays, a member of the crow family that is often used for these studies. The Groningen team then developed a computer model in which “virtual jays” cached food under various conditions." - Maitani
"In PLOS ONE, they argued that the model showed the jays’ might be moving their food—or recaching it—not because they were reading the minds of their competitors, but simply because of the stress of having another bird present (especially a more dominant one) and of losing food to thieves. The result contradicted previous work by Clayton’s group suggesting that crows might have a humanlike awareness of other creatures’ mental states—a cognitive ability known as theory of mind that has been claimed in dogs, chimps, and even rats." - Maitani
Theory of mind is more like mind projection than mind reading. It takes one to know one and all that :) (Still awesome, though. Humans get less special by the day.) - Eivind
I have to laugh at the idea of Western scrub jays in the UK. That is one of the most common bird sightings I make in my home garden. I assumed it was only the squirrels hiding food. - Spidra Webster