Super Smart Animals - and stupid humans!

By Blog on the Box on Feb 10, 12 11:12 AM

Did you spot those two programmes about clever creatures.

It was called Super Smart Animals, it was broadcast over two nights on BBC1, and it was brilliant.

It was a joy to watch presenter Liz Bonnin outsmarted by a chimp in a memory test.

Liz struggled to remember where shapes appeared on a screen while the chimp did it with no mistakes and did it quickly.

There was footage of dolphins remembering letters and numbers which showed that animal brains are more complex than we thought.

There was also the parrot who could not just say words but recognise colour, shape, and texture.

Pretty Polly was pretty intelligent and would have been in the avian equivalent of MENSA if there was one.

The crows who bear grudges, the elephants who are vain, and the dog enjoying skateboarding were all fun.

At the same time there was clear evidence that humans can show themselves up by acting stupidly.

In a news item broadcast between the two episodes zoo keepers abroad practiced the possible escape of a rhino.

Some of them were inside a papier-mâché rhino while others fired tranquilliser darts at it and it fell over.

So they now know what to do if a papier-mâché rhino escapes. Not impressive.

The chimp would not have made that mistake, or the parrot, and you were left wondering why humans can sometimes have the intellectual capacity of...humans.

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