Popular Post Wepwawet Posted September 28, 2020 Popular Post #1 Share Posted September 28, 2020 Research published in Science The science stuff shows that crows have sensory consciousness, explained in the abstract: Quote Abstract Subjective experiences that can be consciously accessed and reported are associated with the cerebral cortex. Whether sensory consciousness can also arise from differently organized brains that lack a layered cerebral cortex, such as the bird brain, remains unknown. We show that single-neuron responses in the pallial endbrain of crows performing a visual detection task correlate with the birds’ perception about stimulus presence or absence and argue that this is an empirical marker of avian consciousness. Neuronal activity follows a temporal two-stage process in which the first activity component mainly reflects physical stimulus intensity, whereas the later component predicts the crows’ perceptual reports. These results suggest that the neural foundations that allow sensory consciousness arose either before the emergence of mammals or independently in at least the avian lineage and do not necessarily require a cerebral cortex. That corvids, and other birds, are smart is not a new idea, think Hugin and Munin, and in modern times I'm sure many of us have seen video evidence on documentaries and Youtube about just how smart they can be. The most famous example is that of the Caledonian crow Betty who was able to bend copper wire into a hook in order to pull food out of a cylinder. Since then she has been surpassed by other corvids showing even greater skills. The authors of this paper have for the first time been able to monitor neuronal activity during experiments in real time. Previously to measure brain activity a bird had to be trussed up and placed in a scanner, and as it wasn't engaged in any activity the results did not give a good idea normal brain activity when the bird was active. These results now put birds, corvids at least, into the same range as us and "higher" mammals such as apes, and researchers have been calling corvids "feathered apes" for a while now. This research ties in with other work done over the years that has shown that corvids have the ability to think about the future and plan. This involves food caches, but it is not a simple matter of hiding food for later, many animals do that, but how they do it and the deceptions they engage in. This research will cause us to have a re-think over animal intelligence and consciousness, and puts our "exceptionalism" in serious doubt, in fact I think the only difference between us and all other animals in intelligence is one of degree and application of that intelligence via the opposing thumb. What the researchers have not addressed, and that is because it is another subject, though related, is the extreme miniaturization of the avian brain which allows them to have proportionaly far more neurons than us, and by us that means all mammals as our neuron density is the same, and a higher density allows information to be moved faster within the brain. Pigeons have six times the density of neurons than us and can process information nearly 50% faster. Corvids have about 84 times the density of pigeons, but I have yet to see any experiments that have measured how fast information travels in their brains, perhaps because it will make us look "stupid". The avian brain is a modified coelurosaur brain, therefore related to the brain of the "raptors", which birds are anyway, and the tyranosaurs. So when a paleontologist points to the "crocodile like" T.rex brain and says this was a "dumb" animal, he cannot know what it's internal structure was like, and if was miniaturized. The insult "bird brain" has outlived it's usefulness, and, I suggest, "beast of the fields". We have long suffered a blind spot caused by scientific ignorance on the one hand, and a desire to separate us from the "beasts", partly for religious reasons. 4 9 Top Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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