Dr Alex Taylor devised an elaborate multi-step test in order to examine the intelligence of birds. He appears in a clip from the BBC series Inside the Animal Mind with a crow nicknamed “007,” who completes the challenging course with little apparent difficulty.
The crow had been held in captivity for only three months prior to completing the test for the first time, and had never encountered such a difficult challenge.
Dr. Taylor’s challenge requires the crow to first retrieve a short stick. The bird must use this device to push individual pebbles through the bars of three separate containers and then drop them into a weighted device in order to release a longer stick capable of enabling the crow to retrieve a food treat. The video clip segment shows “OO7” completing all these tasks relatively quickly and obtaining the food reward.
Crows will display friendliness with humans. Colleen Annek quotes Professor John Marzluff of the University of Washington’s Aviation Conservation Lab, who jokingly says of crows: “neurally, mentally, cognitively, they’re a flying monkey.” Many in Seattle visit the backyard bird feeder of an 8-yr old, Gabi Mann, and her mother. They report that the crows have left over 70 trinkets there.