The local PBS affilliate is

Filed under:General — eric @ 1:43 am

The local PBS affilliate is now broadcasting 24 hours a day, and so at 1:30 in the morning I’m watching the new series of Nature, Inside the animal mind. Episode one, Are Animals Intelligent?, is wonderful. Of course there’s the footage of dolphins and chimps doing smart-lookng things, but there’s also the learning behavior of birds. Pigeons were shown a Picasso painting and a Monet painting. Pecking on Picasso gave food, Monet did not. When they had that down, other paintings from the two artists were shown. The birds could recognize who painted paintings they had not seen before, and whether they’d get food or not. Then Matisse was introduced, and the birds confused Picasso and Matisse at about the same rate that art students did.

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