Biology

Ripped-off ravens sure can hold a grudge

Ripped-off ravens sure can hol...
Ravens won't be fooled twice
Ravens won't be fooled twice
View 1 Image
Ravens won't be fooled twice
1/1
Ravens won't be fooled twice

Birds of the corvid family such as crows, magpies and ravens have built quite a reputation for their smarts, with a history of hitching rides on bald eagles and remembering the faces of their captors. Researchers have further explored this trait in ravens by intentionally ripping the poor birds off in a trade, then returning at a later date to see whether they remember being hard done by.

The research was led by the University of Vienna and conducted by scientists from both Austria and Sweden. The team ran experiments with seven tamed ravens to find out more about whether these birds can interpret negative behaviors from various individuals, and if so how they respond.

The researchers trained the ravens to trade treats with a person, exchanging a piece of bread for a piece of cheese, which they much prefer to eat. But once the birds had become accustomed to this deal, some of the humans would occasionally dupe the bird, taking their bread for themselves and eating it along with the cheese.

Two days later, the birds that had been ripped off would not trade with those same people, but would do so with others that had traded fairly or not yet at all. Impressive memories right? Well the researchers returned two months later, and still only one of the birds was willing to trade with one of the deceivers. These results, the team says, show that ravens are able to remember individuals that are worth cooperating with, even after a single interaction, hinting at how they might behave during social interactions with other ravens.

The research was published in the journal Animal Behavior.

Source: Phys.org

7 comments
Doug Nutter
Wonder if we can train ravens to monitor politicians. They have better memories than too many people. Several species of birds are pretty clever.
Booleanboy
Doug Nutter I think we'd all be better off if we got corvids to REPLACE politicians. Any creature with a memory for the actual truth and a sense of fair play would make better candidates for government than 99% of the world's politicians.
InglisLodge
Sounds like they are smarter than liberals.
Tanstar
Love the comments above :) Thank guys!
GeneMoore
one day , hopefully sooner than later, all the 2 legger researchers will admit that they are not the top dog species when it comes to communication, or logic, or smarts. Everything is alive and communicates in it's own way. The research should be in how to get man to utilize the abilities that he has chosen, seemingly, to forget. Now that would be useful research and something that might even save "modern man" from his self imposed extinction.
LevanahRuthschild
Brilliant! Love the research, and the outcomes, & all the comments! 😀
FredAborn
Should call this the trickle-down cheese test.