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Animal Cognition Clive D. L. Wynne Animal Communication.

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Presentation on theme: "Animal Cognition Clive D. L. Wynne Animal Communication."— Presentation transcript:


2 Animal Cognition Clive D. L. Wynne Animal Communication

3 In the Wild Honeybees in the Alps Vervet monkeys in Kenya Dolphins In the Lab Apes Dolphins Parrots

4 Bees: Round Dance

5 Bees: Waggle Dance Returning forager bees communicate the distance, sun- bearing, and quality of the nectar they have found in a dance.

6 Bees: Waggle Dance Strictly speaking von Frisch only identified that the waggle dance contained certain information He didn’t prove that the followers were actually using that info. “The flight paths of honeybees recruited by the waggle dance,” J. R. Riley, U. Greggers, A. D. Smith, D. R. Reynolds, R. Menzel, Nature, May 12, 2005

7 Vervet Monkeys

8 21 distinct calls e.g., snake leopard eagle appropriate protective reactions

9 Vervet Monkeys: Contents of Calls Call evokes evasive action quick – into the trees! Call evokes representation of threat –watch out – there a lion!

10 Vervet Monkeys: Contents of Calls One suggestive result is that monkeys act differently depending where they are when they hear the alarm vs

11 Vervet Monkeys: Contents of Calls Playback experiments Repeatedly play back same call observe habituation vs

12 Vervet Monkeys: Contents of Calls Habituate one call then test another E.g., snake, snake, snake, leopard

13 Vervet Monkeys: Contents of Calls Wrr & ‘chutter’ both mean ‘other monkeys’ Habituate chutter Test wrr

14 Language Human language has: Vocabulary 10s or 100s of thousands of tokens Grammar Rules for combining words Displaced reference No matter how eloquently your dog may bark, he will never tell you that his parents were honest but poor - Wittgenstein Creativity Ability to describe things never seen before.

15 Winthrop & Luella Kellogg with Donald and Gua, 1931.

16 Gua with Winthrop Kellogg

17 Cathy & Keith Hayes with Vicki. Late 1940s.

18 Kathy & Keith Hayes with Viki

19 Allen & Beatrix Gardner with Washoe. Roger Fouts & Washoe

20 Duane Rumbaugh and Lana Please person-name move into room Please put food-name in machine Please machine make window open Object-name name of this Color-name name of this

21 Ape Language: Creativity Washoe “Water bird” for swan. Lucy “drink fruit” for water melon. Lana “apple which is orange-color” for orange.

22 Herb Terrace and Nim

23 Ape Language: Vocabulary Washoe 132 ASL signs in 5 years Nim 125 ASL signs in 3 1/2 years Koko 400? signs in 25 years Human 2-year-old learns 10 words a day!

24 Ape Language: Grammar Give orange me give eat orange me eat orange give me eat orange give me you Nim’s longest utterance

25 Ape Language: Kanzi ‘the Einstein and Shakespeare of the chimpanzee world rolled into one.’ Robin Dunbar.

26 Kanzi: Grammatical competence Claims

27 Kanzi: Grammatical competence Reality 50% 28% 72% 57%

28 Ape Language: Kanzi’s Grammar Productive ‘grammar’ Just word order habits Lexigram  gesture Mean length of utterance 1.15 after 20 years – less than Nim! 94% utterances just one sign.

29 Kanzi on Japanese TV documentary Human: Kanzi, this is Janine. Would you like any food? Tell me what food you'd like. Kanzi: Food surprise. Human: Some food surprise? Kanzi: Food surprise. Human: Kanzi, would you like a juice, or some M&Ms, or some sugar cane? Kanzi: M&Ms. Human: You like M&Ms? Okay. Kanzi, is there any other food you'd like me to bring in the backpack? Kanzi: Ball. Human: A ball? Okay … Kanzi: Want milk. Milk. Human: You want some milk? I know, you always want some milk when you're planning to be good. Kanzi: Key. Matada. Good. Human: Oh, you want the key to Matada, and you're going to be good. Well, I'm glad to hear that. I'm glad to hear that.


31 Dolphin signature whistles

32 time  energy frequency

33 Dolphins: artificial language Akeakamai with Louis Herman, 2000

34 Dolphins: artificial language Pipe hoop fetch = ´take the hoop to the pipe´ Hoop pipe fetch = ´take the pipe to the hoop´ Akea tested on 193 novel sentences & correct on 85% Akeakamai with Louis Herman, 2000

35 Parrots What is green? What wood? What shape? How many? What shape is the green wood?

36 Animal Communication Many species communicate From insects to apes The communicative abilities of all species can only be understood as part of their behavioral adaptation to their niches Thus no two species communicate in the same way You may have seen a dog trying to sniff a cat´s rear end And our language is unique to us.

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