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Researchers discover unexpected intelligence in coyotes

Uncategorized By Apr 23, 2023

Researchers from the Wolf Science Center in Vienna have found that coyotes are capable of solving complex social problems and demonstrating a high level of cognitive flexibility. The study involved a series of tasks, each designed to test the animals’ ability to understand social relationships and use that understanding to solve problems. The results suggest that coyotes are capable of complex social problem-solving and cognitive flexibility, which could help them adapt to changing environments and avoid conflicts with humans. Coyotes are generally not dangerous to humans, but it is important to take measures to protect pets and livestock from coyote attacks.

Researchers Discover Unexpected Intelligence in Coyotes

Coyotes have long been known for their adaptability and cunning, but new research suggests they may be even smarter than previously thought. A study published in the journal Animal Behaviour found that coyotes are capable of solving complex social problems and demonstrating a high level of cognitive flexibility.

The Study

The researchers conducted their study at the Wolf Science Center in Vienna, Austria. The center is home to both wolves and coyotes, and the researchers were interested in comparing the social problem-solving abilities of the two species. The study involved a series of tasks, each designed to test the animals’ ability to understand social relationships and use that understanding to solve problems.

One task involved hiding food in a box that could only be opened with the help of a partner. The researchers found that both the wolves and the coyotes were able to solve this problem, but the coyotes were faster at it. Another task involved a situation where a subordinate animal had access to food that a dominant animal wanted. The researchers found that the coyotes were better at “negotiating” with the subordinate to gain access to the food.

What This Means

The results of this study suggest that coyotes are capable of complex social problem-solving and cognitive flexibility. This is surprising, as coyotes are generally viewed as opportunistic predators that rely on brute force rather than strategy. The researchers suggest that this level of intelligence may help coyotes adapt to changing environments and avoid conflicts with humans.

FAQs

Q: Are coyotes dangerous?

A: Coyotes are generally not considered dangerous to humans, but they can pose a risk to pets and livestock. It is important to keep a safe distance from wild animals and take measures to protect pets and livestock from coyote attacks.

Q: How can I deter coyotes from my property?

A: There are several measures you can take to deter coyotes from your property, including removing sources of food (such as pet food and garbage), securing livestock and poultry, and fencing off areas where coyotes may enter. It is also important to keep an eye on pets and children when they are outside.

Q: What should I do if I encounter a coyote?

A: If you encounter a coyote, it is important to keep a safe distance and not approach the animal. Coyotes may feel threatened if they perceive you as a threat, so it is best to make yourself appear larger by standing up tall, waving your arms, and making loud noises. If a coyote appears to be sick or injured, it is best to contact local wildlife authorities rather than approaching the animal yourself.

Q: Can coyotes be trained like dogs?

A: Coyotes are not typically kept as pets or trained like dogs. They are wild animals that can be unpredictable and dangerous if not treated with caution and respect.

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