5 Of Earths Most animal house fairbanks ak Innovative Animals That Use Tools

Green jays have been observed using sticks as tools to extract insects from tree bark. Large-billed crows in urban Japan have been filmed using an innovative technique to crack hard-shelled nuts by dropping them onto crosswalks and letting them be run over and cracked by cars. They then retrieve the cracked nuts when the cars are stopped at the red light. In some towns in America, crows drop walnuts onto busy streets so that the cars will crack the nuts. Humans navigate our material world through the lens of cultural learning. Play has been defined as “activity having no immediate benefits and structurally including repetitive or exaggerated actions that may be out of sequence or disordered”.

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  • If they just have one half, they simply turn it over and hide underneath.
  • Many will pick up small sticks and use them to access hiding insects or other edible things.
  • He then used the coral as an anvil to smash open the shellfish, releasing the food within.
  • Therefore, it can be inferred that other species may exhibit different behavior strategies based on their prey, and environment.
  • Immature western gulls tend to drop their prey more frequently than the older gulls do, most likely due to inconsistency in drop height as well as the height of the drops.

There is considerable discussion about the definition of what constitutes a tool and therefore which behaviours can be considered true examples of tool use. A wide range of animals, including mammals, birds, fish, cephalopods, and insects, are considered to use tools. Many different primates use rocks to break open nuts and sticks to forage for bugs, but most can’t achieve the level of sophistication that’s been seen in wild gorillas. Observations of lowland gorillas in the Republic of Congo revealed that gorillas use sticks to measure the depth of water and even to create makeshift bridges over treacherous streams or swamps. Another breed — the mountain gorilla — is known to create de facto gloves out of thistles to prevent injuring their hands while foraging for food in thick brush. These more complicated behaviors suggest that gorillas are capable of higher-level cognition than other primates.

Do Animals Use Tools?

This behavior is likely due to northwestern crows minimizing and potentially avoiding kleptoparasitism. Orangutans have been observed using sticks to apparently measure the depth of water. It has been reported that a animal house fairbanks ak Sumatran orangutan used a large leaf as an umbrella in a tropical rainstorm. Although elephants have been equipped by evolution with natural “tools,” namely their long, flexible trunks, these mammals have been observed using primitive technology as well. Captive Asian elephants have been known to stomp on fallen branches, ripping off smaller side branches with their trunks, and then using these tools as primitive backscratchers. Plenty of marine invertebrates hide opportunistically behind rocks and corals, but the coconut octopus, Amphioctopus marginatus, is the first identified species to gather materials for its shelter with apparent foresight.


Gulls have been known to drop mollusc shells on paved and hard surfaces such as roads. Their dropping habits are similar to corvids in the sense that repeated drops allow gulls to have easier access towards their prey. Certain species (e.g. the herring gull) have exhibited tool use behavior, using pieces of bread as bait to catch goldfish, for example. In July 2013, the results of a joint study involving scientists from University of Oxford, the University of Vienna and the Max Planck Institute, again involving the Tanimbar corellas of the Vienna Goffin Lab, were announced.


Primate tool use has also been studied by scientists for centuries. Charles Darwin discussed tool use among baboons in his 1871 book “The Descent of Man,” and Jane Goodall famously studied chimpanzees and their use of tools in the 1960s. Under each foreleg, the sea otter has a loose pouch of skin that extends across the chest. In this pouch , the animal stores collected food to bring to the surface. This pouch also holds a rock, unique to the otter, that is used to break open shellfish and clams.

Despite these costs, spongers have similar calving success to non-spongers. For example, archaeological evidence indicates that the basic chimpanzee nut-cracking know-how has been static for at least the past 4300 years. This consistency and stasis in tool behavior suggests that chimpanzee tools are not refined or improved across generations with a ratcheting-up effect, but rather reinvented by every single chimpanzee generation. That is, non-human primates must “re-invent the wheel” at every generation anew. Chimps are master tool-users and have been known to use stones to crack open nuts, and to use sticks and grass to “fish” for crawly snacks like ants and termites. Chimps in the wild also share tools with each other and teach their young how to utilize tools for things like hunting and defending themselves against attackers.

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If I see something that leads me to believe a video is fake I won’t include it or will at least mention that. I don’t do anything to determine their authenticity; I just grab them from wherever I see them online Possibly, some of these clips are fake. In general, I think the vast majority are real, but others could disagree. Brown-headed nuthatches have been observed to methodically use bark pieces to remove other flakes of bark from a tree.