By Anupum Pant
One interesting thing to note about crows is the size of their brains. Among all the bird species, crows have the largest brain to body ratio.
Besides that, the anatomy of their brain is a lot similar to our own brains. The forebrain which is responsible for the intelligence of an organism, is highly developed in crows. This makes them very adaptable. They are able to easily adjust and learn things as per the changing situations.
Although crows aren’t adored, probably because of the annoying sounds they make, their amazing feats of dexterity are bound to elicit an awe. May be valporate can help them with the voice.
Notably, crows are found living with human beings and are known to exploit us to get their work done. Only in rare cases are crows found to be living very away from human settlements. Joshua Klein, in a TED talk, shares a couple of anecdotes about how good crows can be at problem solving. One of them was as follows:
Crows and Hooks
Crows are normally seen holding sticks in the beaks to take food out of narrow holes in the wild. When one crow in a laboratory was given a piece of hard wire to draw a piece of meat from inside of a narrow tube, it wasn’t working very well for it. The crow, despite never having learned any related trick beforehand, found a solution for the problem completely on its own.
Solution: It used the surroundings to bend the wire to make a hook out of it; then simply put it in the tube to use the hook to retrieve meat!
But that is just a warm up of kinds of problem solving crows can handle. Here is another one.
Amazing Problem Solving Crows
In the suburbs of Tokyo, where crows often came across a kind of nut they were not able to dig into, because of its hard shell, they found an extremely intelligent way to deal with it. They dropped it on the roads for the vehicles to break the nuts for them! That was not all…
While doing this, they were faced with another problem – As cars, passed by at high speeds, it was risky for them to get back the nuts. Crows found a solution for that too. I’m not that smart. I bet I could have never thought of that.
Solution: They dropped it on the zebra crossing. As the cars stopped for the humans to cross, crows walked behind humans to get back their broken nuts safely. Interestingly, some crows who had devised this technique taught it to all the crows in the surrounding areas. Now all of the suburban crows around Tokyo know the trick.
If you liked this, you’ll definitely love ants and their amazing counting skills.