Lacan, Trumped by a Bird

From an article in the NY Times today on the changing concepts of the “birdbrain”:

“Magpies, at an earlier age than any other creature tested develop an understanding of the fact that when an object disappears behind a curtain, it has not vanished.”

This would make magpies smarter than my cats, who seem to believe that a hand under a piece of fabric is not a hand but a toy.

The article also mentions crows in Japan that throw walnuts under the tires of cars, and then, when the coast is clear, run to eat the shelled nuts,

that pigeons can memorize up to 725 different visual patterns and show evidence of deceptive behavior (a sign of intelligence…),

that parrots “can converse with humans, invent syntax and teach other parrots what they know.”


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