On the Intelligence of Animals

Major Shifts in Consciousness Observed throughout the Animal Kingdom

By Christina Sarich on Thursday January 10th, 2019

Image: Carl Safina

The Amazing Intelligence of Animals

Humans have long thought themselves to be the smartest animals on the planet but evidence continues to reveal that even with little shared DNA, animals are catching up, and perhaps even surpassing our own evolutionary intelligence.

Some philosophical perspectives suggest that this anthropomorphic egocentrism is misplaced, since all creatures, not just people, have ‘mind,’ which is capable of evolving toward higher levels of consciousness. We share a quarter of our DNA, after all, with a single grain of rice, but there is something even more intelligent in our design and many believe it permeates everything.

The Buddhists and Taoists regularly call for us to be mindful of all sentient beings, while the suppositions of panpsychism, the view that mind (psyche) is everywhere (pan), reaches back into ancient Greece and the teachings of Miletus and Plato.

The Universal Psyche

Terrence McKenna supposes that the Universal psyche has been given an extra push overtime. He theorizes that animals moved to grasslands as the North African jungles receded after the ice age. These animals grazed on whatever they could find, including psilocybin-containing mushrooms growing in the dung of ungulate herds. McKenna suggests that the psychedelics in the animals’ diets helped to create synesthesia, and then language, followed by additional higher-intelligence skill sets.

McKenna argues that when mushrooms disappeared from their diets another 12,000 years later due to climate change, animals simply regressed back to less intelligent primates.

The evolutionary intelligence of animalsAnimals are catching up, and perhaps even surpassing our own evolutionary intelligence.

Mainstream science says that it is only subtle refinements in our brain’s architecture that allows us to be ‘smarter’ than most other animals. While dogs can’t yet compose music, birds do it every day. Perhaps the expression is not as complex as a violin concerto, but even the most rarefied composer has looked to nature for musical inspiration, if not immaculate intelligence.

No matter what drives our evolution, though, there is clear evidence that it is changing–obviously in people–but perhaps more subtlety in animals from a number of species.

Footage of animals learning to use tools provides evidence of this evolutionary shift happening to all of us on Earth, not just the human race, but there are other indications of intelligence as well. We all seem to be awakening together.

If consciousness is truly primordial and all things are just ‘minds in a world of mind’ it would explain some of the fascinating behaviors of animals in recent times.

Animal Awakening

New Caledonian Crows

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have caught New Caledonian crows carrying two items at once using a stick–a feat normally only seen in the human race. First, one crow slipped a wooden stick into a metal nut and flew away, and just a few days later another crow conducted a similar behavior, carrying a large wooden ball with a stick.

Ravens were found to be just as clever as chimps, despite having mini brains.


Octopuses exhibit amazing abilities, including short and long-term memory. They’ve even been known to sneak aboard fishing vessels and pry open crabs caught be fishermen–no tools needed. They are also such great escape artists, they can squeeze through openings no bigger than their eyeballs.


Scientists also have documented monkeys, called Serra da Capivara capuchins, making stone ‘tools’ that bear a striking resemblance to early human implementations for digging, cutting meat, or opening nuts. The sharp rock ‘tools,’ which they make by banging one rock on top of another, are so similar to ancient tools made by early humans that archeologists are having to rethink giving credit to previous human civilizations.

Capuchins produce sharp-edged stone flakes.


Chimps in Bakoun, Guinea recently stunned scientists when they were found using long twigs like fishing poles, dragging the rods in water to scoop up algae that they could then eat. The footage is an affront to the notion that people are the only intelligent creatures with an ability to consciously evolve.

Chimpanzees fishing for algae with tools in Bakoun, Guinea.


Even bees are exhibiting more complex behaviors. Researchers at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) have discovered that bumblebees can learn how to carry out complex instructions, and then pass that knowledge along to other bees in the hive.

Scientists set up an experiment with three artificial flowers containing sugar-water and attached pieces of string to each flower. They were then placed inside a clear, plexiglas panel with just the strings poking out. Researchers were curious to see if the bees could problem-solve and get the ‘nectar’ from the fake flowers.

Out of a control group of 110 bees, only two figured out how to pull the strings to get to the nectar. They did this with no training. A second group was then ‘trained’ by moving the flowers out of reach gradually. This group did much better. 23 out of 40 learned to pull the strings to get the reward.

Amazingly, when a new group of bees was introduced to the problem, 60 percent were able to pick up the new skill simply by observing the other ‘trained’ bees access the reward.

Bumblebees learning to pull strings for a reward.

All Sentient Beings are Evolving

Researchers learned that the transmission of knowledge (consciousness) does not require sophisticated cognitive abilities, which only humans currently have, and that many animals may have more intelligence than we have given them credit for.

So, where do we draw the line for consciousness evolution? Do we stop at vertebrates or primates? The nervous system of insects may not be as complex as ours, with the capability of transmuting energy through the chakras as ancient martial artists and yogis have done, but even with minds totally unlike ours, it appears that all sentient beings are indeed evolving toward a grander design and expanded intelligence.

from:    https://upliftconnect.com/major-shifts-in-consciousness-observed-throughout-the-animal-kingdom/

Oregon Bumblebee Deaths

AS if the bee population were not already threatened enough, this happens:

Pesticide blamed in death of 25,000 bumblebees in Oregon

Conservationists in Oregon are trying to figure out why 25,000 bees died in a parking lot.

By Devin KellyJune 21, 2013, 1:08 p.m.

A pesticide used to control aphids has been singled out as the cause in this week’s deaths of tens of thousands of bumblebees in a retail parking lot in Oregon, state officials said Friday.

At least 25,000 bees were found dead and more were dying in a Target parking lot in Wilsonville, about 18 miles southwest of Portland, in what experts have described as the largest known die-off of  bees in the United States.

Witnesses reported bees falling from trees and littering the ground.

Crews worked Friday morning to wrap protective netting, purchased by the city, around the 55 European linden trees in the area. Workers stood on cherry-pickers to place the bee-proof shade material around the large trees, which are in full bloom.

On Monday, concerned calls from shoppers prompted the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation — a Portland-area conservation group — to sound an alarm. The Oregon State Department of Agriculture responded by sending staff to collect samples of insects and foliage from the linden trees.

State officials were able to directly link the deaths to the pesticide Safari, which was sprayed on the trees Saturday to control aphids, the department said Friday in a statement. Officials have not yet identified the property management agency or the crews that applied the pesticide.

“It was a mistake to put it on linden trees in bloom,” said Dan Hilburn, director of plant programs with the Oregon State Department of Agriculture. Linden flowers contain nectar highly attractive to bees.

The pesticide, in a class called neonicotinoids, is lethal to bees and other pollinators. Honeybees, ladybird beetles (ladybugs) and syrphid flies were also found dead in the lot, said Scott Hoffman Black, executive director of the Xerces Society.

In terms of assessing penalties, investigators are focusing on whether the pesticide was applied incosistently with its labeling, and whether the activity was conducted in a faulty, careless or negligent manner, said Dale Mitchell, the pesticide compliance program manager with the Oregon Department of Agriculture.

Violations can carry fines ranging from $1,000 to $10,000, Mitchell said.

In fact, the product label reads:

“This product is highly toxic to bees exposed to direct treatment or residues on blooming crops or weeds. Do not apply this product or allow it to drift to blooming crops or weeds if bees are visiting the treatment area.”

The environmental impact of neonicotinoids has come under increasing scrutiny worldwide. In April, the European Union banned the use of three types of neonicotinoid pesticides in crops that attract bees.

In the United States, one group, the Center for Food Safety, has sued the Environmental Protection Agency, saying that neonicotinoids are not regulated properly.

In a statement, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said it was aware of the Wilsonville bee deaths. “The EPA is tracking the incident closely but at this time we cannot comment on ongoing investigations,” the agency said.

The Wilsonville incident marked an ominous start to National Pollinator Week, an event designed to bring attention to the disappearance of bees. An estimated 10 billion hives have been lost since colony collapse disorder first emerged in 2006.

Bumblebee hives are much smaller than honeybee hives, and an estimated 150 colonies were destroyed in Wilsonville, Black said.

from:    http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-bumble-bees-die-in-oregon-20130621,0,1466945.story