This browser is supported only in Windows 10 and above.
(Photo: Getty Images)

Inspired by the BBC America original program The Hunt, which premiered on July 3, we took a look at wild animals battling it out in their natural habitats in this earlier Anglophenia post. Coming out on top of the food change definitely takes quick thinking. You can watch the first episode of The Hunt right here on Keeping the survival of the fittest in mind, let’s take a look at 10 other examples of wildlife showing off their know-how:

1. Elephant seeks out first aid.
A male elephant in Zimbabwe, who goes by Pretty Boy, was shot in the head by poachers. It’s a hard image to look at, but you can take heart, he survived the wound. Pretty Boy toughed it out for weeks and when spotting a veterinarian van, approached the vehicle seeking aid.

2. “You go first. No, you go.”
In the below clip we see two orangutans trying to cross a river. The older ape uses a stick to test the depth of the water before wading through. The larger orangutan does end up taking the lead, venturing into the water, but ultimately carrying the smaller one on his shoulders.

3. Dolphin protects snout with sponge.
It’s commonly known that dolphins are highly intelligent. They can speak to each other through whistles, even giving each other names. Dolphins are sociable beings but can also be cautious. In the below clip dolphins are seen using sponges to protect their snouts when looking for food on the ocean floor.

4. Sharks think first, bite second. 
Shark scientist Dr. Erich Ritter believes sharks need three cues before attacking, which include the right smell, sight and sound. He enters a bay containing a group of bull sharks to test his theory in this BBC Earth clip (which mentions Ritter’s murky water accident at 4:07):

5. “Who are you looking at?”
Magpies are part of the crow family. They may not be the first to come to mind when thinking of highly intelligent animals, but they are the only non-mammals who can recognize themselves in the mirror, seen in the below clip.

6. Parrots are no bird brains.
Some might think parrots are just mimics, that they can speak like humans but are not articulating their own thoughts. BBC Earth took on the task to prove that parrots are capable of more than just parroting. You can see the findings in the below clip.

7. Who needs an extra hand when you have eight legs?
The below clip shows the intricate maneuvering that goes into making a spider web. When watching the garden spider measure out her thread, linking it to another thread, while holding the scaffolding thread with a free leg, and then snipping it, it makes us think of trying to play the children’s string game Cat’s Cradle (which requires two people and two sets of hands).

8. Sea lion reserves table for one.
Studies have shown that sea lions can think logically, even deducing that if a = b and b= c, that a = c. We don’t have a video of a sea lion doing algebra, so we’ll have to take science’ word on it. But the sea lion pup in the below clip was so hungry that he made his way to land, wandering into a local eatery. 

9. An octopus builds himself a home.
Octopuses (yes, this is the correct plural form of octopus, according to are considered the smartest of invertebrates. While an octopus may not have a back bone, he does have a knack for tool use. The octopus in the below clip gathers two empty coconut shells, walks them across the sea floor, and then assembles them into shelter. There’s a debate over what constitutes tool use, which is defined in the below clip.

10. A for effort.
The sea otter in the below clip is a tenacious one, never giving up. He casually swims on his back, with a rock resting on his belly. The otter slams a clam sealed shut against the rock to open it. And, ta-da, lunch is served.

Were you surprised by any of the above clips? 

Read More
By Brigid Brown