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[Issue] Intelligence-equipped dove, abstract thinking of space-time

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Birds often described as not having good hair. The pigeon, which is often seen around, has long been a typical example of bad head. However, research shows that it is not.

Scientists at the University of Iowa have emphasized that pigeons have the ability to make highly abstract decisions. Just to judge time and space using the common areas of the brain.

The researchers found that the dove looked at the fixed horizon on the computer screen to determine the "length" expressed in hours. In addition to picking long lines, pigeons also determined that longer lines were longer.

Abstract concept

The fact that doves use the common area of ​​the brain suggests that the abstract concept is not handled separately. This concept has come to similar conclusions in experiments with humans and other primates. This study has shown that the cognitive abilities of birds are close to humans and primates, showing that the dove's nervous system can achieve even greater accomplishments. It is argued that it is wrong to say that a bird with intelligence is a Bird-Brain.

Human beings use the parietal cortex of the brain to recognize time and space, and do not need tools such as watches or tape measure. The parietal cortex, located on the outermost layer of the brain, is a part that performs high-level functions including speech and decision-making. It consists of four parts (lobes) including the parietal cortex that processes other types of sensory information. This cerebral cortex is only a part of human being.

However, in the case of pigeons, there is no parietal cortex, so it is necessary to distinguish time and space from other areas of the brain. Professor Edward Wasserman of the research team estimated that this would be a common evolutionary mechanism in the central nervous system of related birds and primates.

General size test

The researchers were experimenting with the dove showing the horizon on the computer screen. The horizon was 6cm and 24cm long, showing every second or every 8 seconds. Every time the dove correctly reported the length of the line, it compensated with the feed. The experiment proceeded in a way that the pigeons pecked the image of the visual lines on the screen.

The researchers also experimented with variability to see if the pigeons can judge the long and short lines. Short or long exposure, showing the length of the additional lines. And Cerman explained that the doves in this experiment had to deal with time and space at the same time, knowing what lines of dimensions would be tested. Experimental results showed that the length of the line affected the way the saddle distinguished the length of the line, and the duration of the line influenced how the line length was recognized. This experiment with the concept of space and time is similar to that performed on monkeys and humans. That is, it shows the general "neural coding" of time and space.

This study dismisses the existing belief that the parietal cortex is where the interaction of time and space concepts occurs. But the dove's brain does not have this part of the human being, so the research is not generalized, the team said.

Other brain systems

Benjamin de Corte, a graduate student at the University of Iowa vs. Neurology and three years later, said that cortex is not a unique part of space and time, and that pigeons understood time and space with other systems in the brain. He emphasized that there is no cortex in this other area used by the pigeon. One common feature of birds and mammals is that they all have a striatum that integrates a variety of information, including time and goal-directed behavior. The researchers also suggested that time, space, and numbers would be integrated in this structure.

De Corte compared the predators chasing the feeding pigeons for message delivery. For example, judging how fast a food moves and predicting where it will be in the near future. And properly intercept the food. He said doves also do this kind of calculation.

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