Dracil’s BlogJournal

April 1, 2009

Animal babies

Filed under: Uncategorized — dracil @ 11:38 pm

http://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/green/Zoo_Babies.html

I had a thought while looking at that.  Most animals are pretty cute when young.  At least to us.  Human ones included.

The question is, are they cute to the animals themselves?  What about across species?  Can most animals even appreciate “cuteness”?  If so, then it might be said that animals have an artistic sense.  Yet that is not an ability we normally attribute to animals (or at least, I don’t).  But the trait of being cute when young would certainly confer an evolutionary advantage if it was more universally recognized.  So the number of animals that are cute when young would seem to indicate that this recognition is also a trait that animals have, at least within the species.

Though of course there are exceptions, as I remember reading some stuff about some species of animals where the father will kill the young (then again, guys don’t usually find babies to be as cute right?) and of course predators generally prefer the young since they tend to be an easier prey (something humans do too to some capacity, veal anyone?).  Ok, so maybe we are very similar after all.

Which means more research should be done on animals’ capacity to appreciate art.  Most of the studies I remember seem to be focused on more objective stuff, like memory, puzzle-solving, counting, or being able to recognize themselves in a mirror.  Very little, if anything dealt with this more subjective side.

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