Birds are capable of extraordinary behavioral feats, from solving complex puzzles to tool making. There may be good reason for that. A new study shows that, pound for pound, birds pack more neurons into their small brains than mammals, including primates.
We don’t usually think of fish as being particularly smart, but a new experiment reveals that at least one species of tropical fish is capable of distinguishing between human faces. Scientists have never seen fish do this before, and it’s changing our understanding of these creatures and how brains work.
The backlash has been vicious since zookeepers killed a gorilla named Harambe in order to protect a boy who fell into its enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo. Now, police are investigating the parents in a misguided effort to administer blame, but one thing is more clear than ever: Zoos are awful places for animals to…
Very few animals are capable of recognizing themselves in the mirror. New research suggests that manta rays are capable of this unique cognitive feat—a possible sign that these fish are self-aware.
In a world’s first, researchers from the US and UK have created an impression of a submerged human as recorded by a dolphin’s echolocation.
To do it, a team led by Jack Kassewitz of SpeakDolphin.com used an imaging system known as a Cymascope. The system, developed by John Stuart Reid (who also assisted with the…
Millions of landmines remain strewn across Angola, remnants of the country’s long civil war. Remarkably, some elephants have learned to sniff out and avoid these hazards, and even alert an entire herd to the danger. Intrigued, the U.S. Army is now testing the ability of elephants to detect chemicals found in landmines…
Since the time of Aristotle, scientists have debated the degree to which animals are capable of exhibiting rational, independent thought. But as this new TED-Ed video demonstrates, our ruminations on animal intelligence tend to say more about ourselves than anything else.
Turns out that African apes and humans have more in common than previously thought. Observations made in the jungles of Guinea show wild chimps sipping alcoholic tree sap from leaf sponges, followed by some characteristically drunken behaviors.
Of all the animals that exist on this planet, only a precious few have the capacity to recognize themselves in a mirror. These fascinating — and at times hilarious — videos taken by photographer Xavier Hubert-Brierre reveal the reactions of various animals as they gaze upon their reflections for the very first time.
Earlier today, a NYC judge heard arguments on the rights of two chimps being used for science experiments. During the two-hours of proceedings, the president of the Nonhuman Rights Projects described the chimps as “autonomous and self-determining beings.” A decision on their fate is expected in one to two months. More
Earlier this month, a change was made to New Zealand’s Animal Welfare Amendment Bill stating that animals — like humans — are “sentient” beings.
Humpback whales are renowned for their ability to produce songs of remarkable beauty, complexity, and duration. But despite decades of research, scientists still aren't sure why these whales engage in such elaborate acoustic displays. Here's what we know — and have yet to learn — about the humpback whale's song.
Unlike ants and termites, individual cockroaches exhibit dynamic character traits, such as bravery and sociability. This may explain why cockroaches are such excellent survivors, capable of adapting to inhospitable and often unpredictable environments.
Since the age of four, Gabi Mann of Seattle has forged a relationship with the neighborhood crows by offering them food. Then suddenly something unexpected happened — the crows, in an apparent act of reciprocation, started to present various trinkets to Gabi in return.
The human brain is special. Just not that special. To understand animal minds, and our own place in the living world, we should remove ourselves from centre stage.
The visual acuity of our canine companions is about 20-40% as good as ours. But the average dog's nose is 10,000 times more sensitive to odors than the human nose. As this fascinating TED-Ed video shows, they don't so much see the world as they smell it.
Yesterday, a New York appeals court rejected a lawsuit filed by the Nonhuman Rights Project seeking legal rights for Tommy, a 26-year-old chimp kept alone in a warehouse. Here's why the judges were wrong — and why that's actually good news in the struggle to recognize nonhuman animal personhood.
In what will come as a surprise to virtually nobody, a new brain study shows that dogs don't just respond to our words, they also respond to how we say them. It's a finding that suggests dogs evolved their keen listening skills as a result of domestication.
A European garden spider recently stumbled upon a rather amazing solution to a serious problem. It wanted to weave its web across the top of a garage, but the angle of the roof was too shallow for anchoring. So it did what any industrious spider would do — it suspended a rock to anchor the bottom of the web.