Lately, a group of scientists from SOKENDAI engaged in a rather unusual and amusing experiment. Researchers said that two Asian elephants demonstrate ingenuity when coming up with a new way to reach their food.
We know for a fact that elephants use their massive trunks in order to put food in their mouth. But the experiment conducted by the SONDEKAI biologists proved that the elephant’s natural extension becomes a very effective tool in certain circumstances.
In order to further study the feeding habits of the gentle giants, a group a scientists took a little trip to the Kamine Zoo. They did not bring any special gear with them. Just some papers and a couple of cameras. How did the experiment proceed?
Instead of closing them in a controlled environment in order to conduct measurement and validate results accordingly, the jesting scientists had something else in mind. By letting them stay in the enclosure, the elephants were more relaxed due to the fact that they were in a familiar environment.
The team then placed all sort of foods, like hay, potatoes, apples and bamboos, in very high places, unreachable by conventional means. The results of the experiment were indeed surprising.
When the elephants saw that the products were out of reach, they used their massive trunks life a couple of leaf-blowers. And so, they huffed and they puffed, until they brought the food closer to them. The action was gradual. First, the elephants tried to jog the tree to see if the foods falls down. After a couple of unsuccessful hits, they gently began to blow at their food. Seeing that their attempts were successful, they continued doing that until they can get hold of their food.
Apart from being delighted at this amazing spectacle, the scientists wrote down all the process. Everything was measured and wrote down in order to draw a general conclusion. Scientist measured the position of the trunks relative to their torso and how the trunk arched itself. They also measured, how much time the elephant spends blowing at his food before discovering if the method actually yields results.
According to their study, elephants demonstrate ingenuity in coming up with new feeding methods. Results suggest that the proximity of the foods is a key factor in understating its behavior. It seems that, the closer an elephant is to its food, the possibility of him using this method of fishing for food diminishes.
The study proves that elephants are very well adapted to their environment. Moreover, they are highly aware where they are and what must they do in order to survive.