nancylebov (nancylebov) wrote,
nancylebov
nancylebov

Sheep a good bit smarter than previously thought

Or, people more ignorant than they've previously noticed.
So Avanzo and Morton put seven female sheep through a series of increasingly tricky challenges. In one test the sheep walked into a pen that contained two buckets, one blue and the other yellow, with some food in the blue one. Over the course of a few trials they learned what was going on and always went to the blue bucket.

When the researchers put the food in the yellow bucket instead, the sheep changed their behaviour accordingly. They also mastered a subtler game in which the food was still in one of the buckets but the clue to its location was the colour of a cone placed nearby, not the colour of the bucket itself.

They don't seem to have tried one of those tests to see how much sheep are influenced by social pressure.

Bonus link: Three Bags Full, a mystery about sheep investigating who killed their shepherd.

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