Wednesday, September 21, 2016

September 21. Day 265. Food for thought

There was this story on the radio this week about crows. Apparently crows in a couple of different parts of the world have learned to create tools. The New Caledonian crows, for instance, have been recorded creating hooks to remove food from hard to reach nooks. Researchers say they are the only birds believed to be tool makers. Frankly I am only a bit surprised that birds and not just higher order mammals have the ability. Anyone who has watched birds faced with an eating challenge will know they are both innovative and determined. Today it was the noisy miners at a cafe at the Gardens Point campus. I don't often visit GP but a meeting today took me away from Kelvin Grove. There was lunch provided. You can't argue with that. But before the meeting I had another meeting with a student at a cafe. It was raining. actually, it was bucketing down. Everyone, including the birds, was sheltering under the covered eating area. The humans were ordering and paying for food and coffee. The birds were just stealing everything they could get their beaks into. And they were showing a great deal of creativity in filling their bellies. I love them for that (in fact, I may have borrowed some of their techniques at the buffet table just a few minutes later at the catered lunch meeting). And neither of us was actually bothering too much with "proper" tools.

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