The surprising cognitive abilities of crows

A really excellent PBS CBC (thanks m5) documentary on the surprising cognitive abilities of crows:

Watch the full episode. See more Nature.

See also how crows might be trained to do something a little more lucrative:

This latter video tells a great story, but as John Hawkes has pointed out, there is perhaps some confusion about how successful Josh Klein's more lucrative experiments actually were.

More like this

How did I miss this for 24 hours? From the Times Magazine's 8th Annual Year in Ideas issue - Vending Machine for Crows: In June, Josh Klein revealed his master's-thesis project to a flock of crows at the Binghamton Zoo in south-central New York State. The New York University graduate student…
You may recall a prior post in which I talked about how intelligent crows are. In fact, there was a special on PBS demonstrating their ability to solve problems and even recognize human faces (HIGHLY recommended if you haven't yet had a chance to see it): Watch A Murder of Crows on PBS. See more…
After blogging about my experiences earlier this week, I had crows on the brain. So, as I went drifting through fractal sets, trying to come up with something for this week’s Friday Fractal (now a Saturday Set), I kept running across crow-like shapes. One in particular stuck out, perhaps because I…
tags: Birds in the News, BirdNews, ornithology, birds, avian, newsletter Populations of the Southern cassowary, Casuarius casuarius, around Mission Beach in North Queensland, Australia, are still suffering from the effects of Cyclone Larry two years ago. Image: iStockphoto. Birds in Science In…

Exactly Fred, I was asking myself the same question quite a few times.
If there was no cataclysm, and the dinosaurs did not die out, would we be much more than livestock now?

Considering that ravens are, like, scarily intelligent, I don't find this too surprising.

Cool though!

By Sally Strange (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

Kev: use TOR or some other tool to make it appear that you are connecting from the USA.

Fred, re. intelligent dinosaurs: Some archaeologist worked out how a fairly common dinosaur could have evolved into an intelligent biped, and what that creature would look like. He created a model of it for a museum. And then he found out that it bore an amazing resemblance to the "Grays" (a species of ET) of UFO mythos.

From this I tend to think that humans have a kind of instinct-level or archetypal grasp of alternative histories, from which they draw the elements that comprise their myths. If I was looking to create a species of ET for use in fiction, it might be sensible to derive it from the logical progression of a different evolutionary lineage on Earth than that which led to humans. Science fiction authors do this explicitly and perhaps more fantastically for effect, but don't underestimate what the untrained imaginations of average people can also accomplish.

richarddawkins.net/discussions/543672-inhertitance-of-acquired-behaviour-adaptions-and-brain-gene-expression-in-chickens

atheists, we're gonna cut off your heads...

THE HIGH PRICE OF REVOLUTION
youtube.com/user/xviolatex?feature=mhum

this is such bullshit. the crow was taught to make the hook by a human.
Don't believe everything you see on the net. such crap.

This idea of intelligence is, for me, the most intuitively objectionable aspect of evolution as it's taught. Logically thinking, I would expect intelligence to be selected for most of the time, and that species would be getting progressively smarter. In fact, taking natural selection at face value, I would expect dolphins, wolves, chimps, and crows to be as intelligent as we are - if not more so. Animals with longer evolutionary histories should, overall, be smarter. Wouldn't the smartest organism more often than not survive and reproduce? The sentience of humans, in this theory, just doesn't add up.

By Dan Morgan (not verified) on 02 Dec 2010 #permalink

I listen with love to my body's messages
My body is always working toward optimum health. My body wants to be Whole and Healthy, I cooperate and become healthy, whole and complete.

also follow my blog

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take your meds, you little fckers....

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What do you want, you little ****ers?

more of these idiots

youtube.com/watch?v=q4C5yzFmC80

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_prizes_for_evidence_of_the_paranormal

HOW N WON ALL THE PARANORMAL PRIZES!

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nostradamus

THE HIGH PRICE OF REVOLUTION

youtube.com/user/xviolatex?feature=mhum

Perhaps some completely different highly intelligent organism might have developed tools usage and built a radically different tool using civilization that raised farmed primates for food like we do with chickens today?

Water tanks to be cleaned at least once a year, and said creating a good business opportunity for the business area, we want to talk about possibilities of a successful franchise business.
Marti clean storage company founded in 1993 in Ankara, Turkey's oldest firmalarından.Hatta company in this field, TSE's first and only company in Turkey that the water tank temizliÄi'nde belirtiliyor.Firma 's 3-dealers have var.Åirket the company says they are looking dealers, the franchise fee is for any etmediklerinide says.
Istanbul, Bursa, Izmir, Adana, Mersin, dense residential areas, such as plans to give the franchise dealers.
A large number of water running in the first place to establish a cleaning company clean gerekmiyor.Zaten Marti Depo'nun main center, the demands of different cities the next cleaning equipment and the necessary elements required yönlendiriyor.Onlara supply dealers making.

However, if birds are actually descended from dinosaurs that makes me wonder if creatures such as TRex hadn't been wiped out by some cataclysm would humans ever even had had a chance to evolve and build civilizations on this planet?

I mean, really?? I'm a scientist, and just reading that even made *my* eyes glaze over. If one thing they're trying to convey is the importance and relevance of the scientist's research to GQ readers, what percentage of the readers are really going to walk away with a deeper understanding of what Dr. Jamieson does by reading that description? It would have been a small thing to ask each participant to submit a layman-friendly version of their research (their "elevator talk" description, for example) for GQ to include.

Finally--one of the "scientists" is Dr. Oz. What is he doing in there? One, I would think he's already well-known enough; why not save that spot for another scientist? Two, yes, I know he's actually done research and published, and is on the faculty at Columbia. Fantastic. He's also a serious woo peddler, who has even featured everyone's favorite "alternative" doc, Joseph Mercola, on his talk show, and discussed how vaccines may be playing a role in autism and allergies (despite mounds of evidence to the contrary). This seems to completely contradict their goal of "research funding as a national priority," since Oz is often (and Mercola is always) highly critical of "mainstream medicine." I really don't understand his inclusion, and think it's to the detriment of the rest of the campaign.

However, if birds are actually descended from dinosaurs that makes me wonder if creatures such as TRex hadn't been wiped out by some cataclysm would humans ever even had had a chance to evolve and build civilizations on this planet?

Check out my new social media site in beta that connects industry professionals with the film industry- let me know if I can add you to my blogroll. Get together offline with the film professionals you meet online. www.LoveCinema.com

It's a great pleasure to visit your website and to enjoy your excellent work! You have fine ideas. Really looking forward to read more! :)

Belki de çok zeki bazıları ise tamamen farklı bir organizma araçları kullanımı geliÅtirilen ve bugün tavuk gibi gıda için çiftlik primatlar kaldırdı medeniyet kullanarak bir kökten farklı bir araç inÅa olabilir?

I'm really enjoying the design and layout of your website. It's a very easy on the eyes which makes it much more pleasant for me to come here and visit more often. Did you hire out a developer to create your theme? Excellent work!

It's amazing to me how birds can know when it going to be cold and fly to a warmer place. They seem to be able to predict the weather better then thousands of dollars worth of weather equipment.

Hands down, Apple's app store wins by a mile. It's a huge selection of all sorts of apps vs a rather sad selection of a handful for Zune. Microsoft has plans, especially in the realm of games, but I'm not sure I'd want to bet on the future if this aspect is important to you. The iPod is a much better choice in that case.

Apple now has Rhapsody as an app, which is a great start, but it is currently hampered by the inability to store locally on your iPod, and has a dismal 64kbps bit rate. If this changes, then it will somewhat negate this advantage for the Zune, but the 10 songs per month will still be a big plus in Zune Pass' favor.

Together with almost everything which appears to be developing within this subject material, a significant percentage of opinions are actually very stimulating. On the other hand, I beg your pardon, but I do not give credence to your entire theory, all be it exciting none the less. It looks to everybody that your remarks are not totally rationalized and in fact you are yourself not even thoroughly certain of your argument. In any event I did take pleasure in reading through it.

The fact that crows can recognize peoples faces is interesting it is kind of a test to see if the crows can actual remember someones face. which indeed shows they are smart to an extent.

Actually this is a CBC doc that was aired on PBS in the States.

Vive le Canada!

Of course they're intelligent, otherwise how could they form a band and call it Stone Crowses?!

Well, stone the crows! That's an interesting idea.

Nor in Canada! Oh the irony!

Very interesting indeed.

However, if birds are actually descended from dinosaurs that makes me wonder if creatures such as TRex hadn't been wiped out by some cataclysm would humans ever even had had a chance to evolve and build civilizations on this planet?

Perhaps some completely different highly intelligent organism might have developed tools usage and built a radically different tool using civilization that raised farmed primates for food like we do with chickens today?

KFM, Kentucky Fried Monkeys, well maybe they would have preferred their monkeys raw in little rice and seaweed rolls while enjoying intercontinental flights to warmer southern climes when it was too cold in the northern hemisphere... and CO2 caused global warming would now be hailed as the greatest achievement in the history of intelligent dinosaurs.

By Fred Magyar (not verified) on 28 Oct 2010 #permalink