Primates May be Smarter than Previously Thought

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Bulgaria: Primates May be Smarter than Previously Thought

Primates may be smarter than previously thought, as the tests they were subjected to were totally wrong, BTA quoted the Daily Mail as saying. The newspaper cites a joint study of British and American specialists. In the words of Dr. David Livens, hundreds of studies have intruded us that primates are smart, but not as much as humans. But experts have systematically failed in their attempts to measure the intelligence of these animals accurately and impartially. Our knowledge of the social intelligence of primates often suffers from prejudices and is the result of false science. The apes prove to be much smarter than we have ever thought.

Since they have always been considered the pinnacle of the evolutionary chain, human kind have always overestimated the intelligence of their babies and underestimated that of the elderly monkeys. "Even when monkeys win competitions with young children, scientists tend to interpret their achievements as a consequence of lower cognitive abilities," the study said. "So far, there is no scientific evidence of significant differences in the interpretation of gestures by humans and primates," said David Lives. In the previous methodology of comparing the intellect of humans and apes, the standard for man was a Western, educated, industrialized country, wealthy and democratically built. And the monkeys surveyed in the most frequent cases were orphaned specimens grown in sterile institutions and environments. For the scientific study of the two species, it would be more appropriate for more extended groups of people to be compared with larger groups of primates. According to Kim Bard, a researcher at the University of Portsmouth and co-author of the study, there is a great gap between the realities and the clichés imposed on the intellect of primates. "We think that only people have a sophisticated social intellect."

Recent research also confirms that primates can communicate about missing objects. So far it has been thought that young children are capable of doing so, but not the elderly monkeys. If the primates have to be compared to humans, they have to go through equal training that has never been taken into account in the tests.

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