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The cognitive abilities of birds

The recently published book ‘Avian Cognition’ is the first multi-author book to provide a comprehensive treatment of the cognitive abilities of birds and how they compare to those of other animals. Carel ten Cate, professor of animal behavior at the Institute of Biology, and Susan D. Healy (StAndrews University, United Kingdom) are the editors.

Counting chicks and social ravens

The cognitive abilities of birds are remarkable and frequently make the headlines in the news: day-old chicks have a sense of numbers, parrots can make and use tools, and ravens have sophisticated insights in social relationships, to mention just a few. Birds split off from dinosaurs some 100 million years ago and have brains that differ considerably from those of mammals. However, researchers discover more and more that many abilities of birds are comparable to advanced abilities in primates.

Full range of avian cognitive abilities

In this book, a range of experts from all over the world provide first-hand insights into the full range of avian cognitive abilities, the mechanisms behind them and how they are linked to the ecology of the species. The chapters also give attention to how the findings in birds relate to the cognitive abilities of other species, including humans. The book is meant for students and researchers interested in the current state of avian cognition research, its key questions and appropriate experimental approaches.

Cambridge University Press: Avian Cognition