Crows are one of the most intelligent animals on the planet. Alala are highly skilled with tools, which they use to prise insects and prey from deadwood and vegetation.

The bird is extinct in the wild, but 109 were brought into captivity

Mr Bryce Masuda, co-leader of the study said: 'Later this year, in collaboration with our partners, we will be releasing captive-reared Alala on Hawaii Island, to re-establish a wild population.

'We had occasionally seen birds using stick tools at our two breeding facilities, but hadn't thought much of it.'

The researchers agreed to conduct a collaborative project, to examine the tool-using skills of Alala under controlled conditions.

Mr Masuda said: 'We tested 104 of the 109 Alala alive at the time, and found that the vast majority of them spontaneously used tools.'

The researchers said current evidence strongly suggests that tool use is part of the species' natural behavioural, rather than being a quirk that arose in captivity.

Dr Rutz said: 'Using tools comes naturally to Alala.

'These birds had no specific training prior to our study, yet most of them were incredibly skilled at handling stick tools, and even swiftly extracted bait from demanding tasks.

But she added: 'Let this discovery serve to emphasise the importance to conserving these and other animal species so that we can continue to learn ever more about the range of their behaviour before they vanish for ever in the sixth great wave of extinction. We owe it to future generations.'


Responses to "Smart Hawaiian crow is observed at using twig tools to get food"

Write a comment