Carel ten Cate (Editor), Susan D Healy (Editor)

The cognitive abilities of birds are remarkable: hummingbirds integrate spatial and temporal information about food sources, day-old chicks have a sense of numbers, parrots can make and use tools, and ravens have sophisticated insights in social relationships. This volume describes the full range of avian cognitive abilities, the mechanisms behind such abilities and how they relate to the ecology of the species. Synthesising the latest research in avian cognition, a range of experts in the field provide first-hand insights into experimental procedures, outcomes and theoretical advances, including a discussion of how the findings in birds relate to the cognitive abilities of other species, including humans. The authors cover a range of topics such as spatial cognition, social learning, tool use, perceptual categorization and concept learning, providing the broader context for students and researchers interested in the current state of avian cognition research, its key questions and appropriate experimental approaches.

  • Addresses the proximate mechanisms underlying avian cognition, their ecological and evolutionary context and the approaches that have been used to study this experimentally, providing a complete overview of the field
  • Fully illustrated with over one hundred figures, including detailed diagrams of experimental approaches
  • Leaders in the field demonstrate how avian cognitive abilities have the potential to shed light on the origins of sophisticated traits that are common in humans
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Cambridge University Press, June 2017.  339 pages, hard cover, 108 b/w photos and b/w illustrations, 3 tables