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Saturday, December 1, 2012

INTELLIGENT INSECTS, LIZARDS AND OTHER ANIMALS

Well, another Saturday is here and I'm off to stay at the Halekulani for the annual Chaine des Rotisseurs gala dinner.  Good a day as any to report on extraordinary animals.

I've touched on this subject several times, but was not aware that animal intelligence was so widespread.  Animal Planet has:

  #1  chimpanzee
  #2  dolphin
  #3  orangutan
  #4  elephant
  #5  crow
  #6  pig
  #7  squirrel
  #8  pigeon
  #9  octopus
#10  rat

However, recent research suggests that dolphins are smarter than chimps.  


Popular Science has a recent article on "Animals That Are Smarter Than You Think," posted by Dan Nosowitz.  He is associate editor of PopSci.com.  Some of the unexpected ones include:


Portia labiata:  a spider.  It jumps and is found in Southeast Asia, where it is known as the eight legged cat.  How far?  The equivalent of you leaping 300 feet.  However, it is only about a third of an inch long.  It develops hunting techniques by trial and error.  It lures its victim by plucking on its web.  Lot of "its," but there is something about spiders...

Monitor Lizard:  is the most intelligent reptile and can count up to six.   The largest variety, the Komodo dragon at the National Zoo in DC, for example, recognizes and is not hostile to its keepers.  However, they're 10 feet long, has a toxic bite (with dangerous bacteria) and eat people.  They can run as fast as 13 MPH, not a threat to world record 100 yard dash stars, who have speeds of 20 MPH.  But many of us would have trouble outrunning this beast in uneven terrain.  See them in Skyfall.


Mosquito fish:  can count.  I had them in my aquarium as a child.  In Hawaii, they were known as medaka, which I just learned today is a Japanese name.  I've now graduated to colorful guppies in my water lilly tubs.

Vampire bat:  share food, in the form of blood with neighbors.  They keep track of who shared with whom.

Anole:  might be smarter than many birds.  Wait a minute, isn't this that GEICO Gekko?  It turns out that they are not of the same species.

Honey Bee:  has a complex social structure and a dance that tells others where to find nectar.  It recognizes patterns.

I don't want to show a photo because I hate them (I'll someday report on 1000th large roach I caught in the Hoy Hoy traps I have been using), but it was reported by Japanese researchers that they were smarter than dogs.  Click on that link and it will show you how to kill roaches.  However, be warned that there is a large cockroach on that page.  On the plus side, North Carolina State University has outfitted the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach with electronic devices and a camera to search for people trapped in a collapsed building.  Interesting, but this roach does not bother me:


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Typhoon Bopha (known as Pablo in the Philippines) at 145 MPH (gusts of 175 MPH), shows a latest track slightly south of Manila.  But anything can happen in two days.



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3 comments:

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Muhammad Waheed Iqbal said...

Some animals are really intelligent. It also depends upon whether specific animals live along with humans in daily routine life or not. They learn intelligent behavior from humans like cat , dogs etc.
There are various animal videos on the internet which shows such intelligent behavior of animals.