12

The conclusions drawn in Inoue & Matsuzawa's (2007) study, which seems to be available here, are suspect. First off, the sample sizes (6 chimp, 9 human subjects) are simply too small to draw good inferences about working memory, at least about human working memory, but as I imagine chimps are somewhat expensive subjects, c'est la vie. Secondly, and more ...


10

I wouldn't worry about "running out" of room in our brain. We often forget things just because we don't need to know them, similar to . There are plenty of human savants that display apparently "unlimited" capacities of certain forms of memory, such as Hyperthymesia where one has a seemingly perfect amount of recall of autobiographical details (not to be ...


9

High working memory is associated with greater ability to learn meanings of abstract symbols, such as is required to do mathematics. I would be highly skeptical of a claim that there is a trade-off between WM and general intelligence. Ian M. Lyons, Sian L. Beilock, Beyond quantity: Individual differences in working memory and the ordinal understanding ...


9

No. Different parts of the brain are responsible for different functions, and the brain would not spontaneously reorganize based only on a improved WM. Memory is a huge factor in intelligence, and improving WM would likely result in increased scores on intelligent tests, and in general is a good thing. References: Increased prefrontal and parietal ...


9

It is not that we are just generally smarter then animals, but we posses cognitive tools of a different kind that they don't. Two of them are language and the ability to simulate the future. Regarding language, there is a wide consensus today that human language has some unique complexities that no animal form of communication has (see Pinker's "The ...


8

According to Hal Herzog, humans are the only animals that keep pets. Other animals have also kept pets however it was not under natural settings. These other "pet" relationships were observed in zoos, controlled experiments. etc. One the main reasons Herzog notes that humans are the only animals to keep pets is the idea of culture. Humans have evolved to ...


8

Such behavior does exist in the wider animal world, not just in humans. See the Wikipedia page on Animal Suicide, particularly the section titled "Suicidal behavior". (if you have done any preliminary research on this, be aware that your question doesn't reflect it). There are a number of linked studies in that section, some of which may give you good or ...


7

But what about a human empathizing with less humanoid animals? Empathic responding towards humans is generalized to other species. The greater the similarity of the species towards humans, the larger is the empathic response. The findings support the notion that there is a relationship between human empathy directed towards other humans and human empathy ...


7

Yes. See contra-freeloading or (for humans) ikea effect. Contrafreeloading: (verb) The behavior in which animals offered the choice between eating food provided to them for free or working to get that food would eat the most food from the source that required effort. This term was created in 1963 by animal psychologist Glen Jensen. Jensen ran a study on ...


7

First, the concept of optimality of a learning curve is not well defined. You can measure at least 3 different aspects of learning: Speed of learning Time before extinction Performance at peak Of course, there may be other measures as well, and any combination of such measure may also be a legitimate measure for certain uses. Conditioned Taste Aversion (...


6

What is the difference in the brains for animals capable of these great differences in sexual activity and what part of the brain is responsible for this? In my opinion is a matter of creativity and curiosity. Evolved species try to interact with their ambient in unusual ways, testing different approach to the same "problem" not only to satisfy primary ...


6

If non-human animals do have intelligence too, why is their intelligence not as advanced as humans? Notions like “advanced” or “better” really have no place in evolutionary thinking. Again, evolutionary fitness is about self-reproduction and success compared to whatever competition is present at any moment. There is no force “optimizing” species to meet ...


6

Like any simple-seeming cognitive sciences question, it is important to start with a series of disclaimers. It might seem like human intelligence or intelligence more generally is an intuitive concept, but once you start to explore your intuition or look at historic definitions of intelligence, you see that intelligence is a very ill-defined and slippery ...


5

Let's first be clear that we didn't evolve from monkeys/apes/etc. That's a common misconception. Evolution states that we and monkeys/apes/etc. evolved from a common ancestor. Same with fish. If you go back far enough, we and fish share a common ancestor... we did not, however, evolve from today's Salmon or Macaque. That being said, the origin of ...


5

Determining sample size for an animal experiment is no different than in research with human subjects. What you need to know is the effect size, the significance level and the power (which is the probability that the test detects a significant effect assuming that there is one). The tricky part is getting the effect size (for an interesting discussion have a ...


5

Try an internet search on animal learning probability. Although that might not be what you want because it sounds like you specifically want insight as opposed to learning in general. Your particular example is problematic because you're inferring far too much on the subjects part. They might prefer B because they just want more of anything offered. The ...


5

My answer to this question would be pretty straightforward. From a neurobiological standpoint, sex causes the release of various pair-bonding influencing hormones oxytocin, vasopressin and dopamine. These "feel good" hormones promote bonding and basically encourage the couple to stay together. The more the pair have sex, the more these hormones get ...


5

We are driven by this need to find answer to our questions. Many questions arise from one's mind by experiencing new events or feelings, or having to sort out a cognitive dissonance. An example of this would be the need for victims to find the guilty. When we can’t immediately gratify our desire to know, we become highly motivated to reach a concrete ...


5

Part of what makes speech possible is a complex set of interactions between a number of different muscles that control aspects of producing speech sounds like airflow and mouth shape. Humans are unique in the complexity of the sounds that we can produce. Even if we granted the science-fiction that would be necessary to put a human brain into a chimpanzee and ...


5

Quick (short answer) No, Calhoon did not account for genetic diversity in his experiments outlined in your question. Full answer Reading the article you mentioned, Calhoun (1962) started with wild Norway Rats, also referred to as common rats, brown rats, street rats, sewer rats, or Hanover rats. I confined a population of wild Norway rats in a quarter-...


5

In the case of animals it is not common to refer to mental disorders, there is more commonly talked about behavior problems, (it is not specified in the question what kind of animals) although in essence animals can suffer the same as a human, sometimes the variations are huge, depends on which type of animal we refer (it is not the same to speak of ...


4

Actually, animals are able to imagine the future, at least to the extent that they use prospective control of their movements. And there are fantastic arguments for animals being self-aware, considering self-related processing as a feature of at least mammals if not many more animals (Northoff and Panksepp, The trans-species concept of self and the ...


4

Transexuality is a very social (and human) phenomena that's directly a consequence of how we define it as a society and indirectly a consequence of having distinct male/female ideologies. Humans can be born as an ambiguous sex. We have a wide spectrum of hermaphrodites from androgen insensitivity syndrom (i.e. genetically "male" but can be legally "female" ...


4

"are there other personality traits that have been identified in animals?" There are quite a bit of hits on Google about this. Here's a foundation dedicated to research on animal personalities: The Animal Personality Institute (API), founded in 2004, is an interdisciplinary group of researcher dedicated to advancing the scientific understanding of ...


4

You could start with Hochner's papers, like this one: Hochner, B., Shomrat, T., & Fiorito, G. (2006). The octopus: a model for a comparative analysis of the evolution of learning and memory mechanisms. The Biological Bulletin, 210(3), 308-317. http://www.biolbull.org/content/210/3/308.full As far as I know, he is a world expert.


4

Most flow diagrams with the detail your require are for rudimentary sensory functions (such as seeing, eye tracking and other simple functions) can be found in any neuroanatomy textbook. The one I have experience with is "Neuroanatomy: Text and Atlas" by John H. Martin. Alternatively, if you're looking for a more functional interpretation of how information ...


4

Primatologist Jill Pruetz at Iowa State University in Ames was observing savanna chimpanzees in Senegal and found that chimps there have mastered the first step in controlling fire. However there is this article from worldnewsdailyreport.com, which talks about a group of chimps in the Congo mastering the use of fire through experimentation and observation. ...


4

Short answer IQ tests are designed to compare individuals within a given species. IQ tests for other animals than humans have been devised, however, and give insights in the distribution of smartness in other animalia. Background What is 'intelligence' within the confines of an IQ test? David Wechsler – the creator of the most widely used psychometric IQ ...


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