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Animal Intelligence. Communication. Vocabulary. What are they thinking?

A friend alerted me to a recently published Time Magazine issue on animal intelligence. I have lately been focused on the N.Y. Times and the Economist and so my radar didn't pick this one up. I couldn't get to the full article and so an aperitif is offered below. So, what else is new?

We know that research into animal intelligence, their communication skills when there is no common spoken language between them and us, has been ongoing for a long time and I truly wonder when it would be time for us to finally accept that they are not as dumb as we think they are. Sometimes, I feel that this sort of news articles are just fillers, old and dependable stories that will always ring a bell with readers. They are like cowboy / western movies. They're cheap to produce and people will always watch them.

The Wow factor is already stale. It's time to move on from our insistence that animals are nothing but blobs of protoplasm firing off involuntary reactions to outside stimuli. They can think. Birds build nests and use tools to get to food. Apes can look into a mirror and remove a piece of paper on its head and not from the image on the mirror. This tells us that they too have a sense of self.

Tells us something new.

http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,2008759,00.html


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