Sunday, February 3, 2008

Forget Microhoo merger: sneaky squirrels!

At the risk of turning this blog into a Boing Boing imitator, this piece of science news just can't be ignored. Turns out that squirrels are even smarter than anyone believed. They stage fake burials of nuts in order to fool thieves. This incredible piece of news was picked up by one of my favorite blogs, 60 Second Science. Those rascally critters!

According to a study conducted by Dr. Michael Steele of Wilkes University in Pennsylvania, a fifth of all nut burials by gray squirrels were fakes. And if their store of nuts and acorns is under threat, they'll do even more faux burying to put their adversaries off the scent. But anyone who's ever tried to put up a bird feeder will find this evidence of squirrel intelligence unsurprising.

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