Oft-maligned as disease stuffed flying rats, pigeons tend to get a bad rap. But it looks like the city birds could be much smarter than we initially thought, or at the very least able to keep track of all the people calling them disease stuffed flying rats.
Pigeons may not be so bird-brained after all, as scientists have found the birds’ ability to understand numbers is on par with that of primates.
Previous studies have shown that various animals, from honeybees to chimpanzees, can learn to count when trained with food rewards. In 1998, researchers discovered that rhesus monkeys can not only learn to count to four, but can also pick up on numerical rules and apply them to numbers they haven’t seen before, allowing them to count up to nine without further training.
Add this alongside “friends with Mike Tyson” on the Cool Things About Pigeons list.