Goats are one of the oldest domesticated species, and have been used for their milk, meat, hair, and skins over much of the world. They are extremely curious and intelligent. But a new study has suggested that goats have excellent problem-solving skills and long-term memory than previously thought.
According to a study by the researchers at Queen Mary University of London and Institute of Agricultural Sciences in Zurich, goats can learn how to solve complicated odd jobs very quickly. To study goats’ intelligence, researchers trained a group of the mammals to obtain food from a box, by pulling a lever with their mouth. Researchers tested the memory of the goats by repeating the task after one month and again after ten months. After the study, researchers revealed that out of 12 goats, 9 goats had successfully learned the task.
Dr Alan McElligott, co-author of the study said in a statement, “Our results challenge the common misconception that goats aren’t intelligent animals – they have the ability to learn complex tasks and remember them for a long time.”
Another researcher as well as lead author Dr Elodie Briefer said, “The speed at which the goats completed the task at 10 months compared to how long it took them to learn indicates excellent long-term memory. We found that those without a demonstrator were just as fast at learning as those that had seen demonstrations. This shows that goats prefer to learn on their own rather than by watching others.”
The researchers have published their study in the journal Frontiers in Zoology.
Courtesy: Queen Mary University of London