Amid COVID-19 lockdown rules in 2020, social media users appeared to "discover" a brand new quotation from the classic dystopian novel "1984.". Elephants who are bonded with humans may have the same reactions. In December 2017, college student Julia Hass had an idea that turned out to be enormously popular when she posted that elephants evidently have a natural affinity for and affection toward human beings: I just learned that elephants think humans are cute the way humans think puppies are cute (the same part of the brain lights up when they see us) so pack it in, nothing else this pure and good is happening today. Rossman, Zoe et al. Researchers from Oxford University, Save the Elephants, and Disney's Animal Kingdom carried out a series of audio experiments in which recordings of the voices of the Samburu, a local tribe from North Kenya, were played to resting elephants. Humans have often felt a kind of kinship and bond with elephants due to the level of emotion they sometimes seem to express, but it seems that there is another similarity between us and them: our chins. Elephants do not have the greatest eyesight in the animal kingdom, but they never forget a face. And when I tried to tweet other things, innocuous things, hoping everything would go back to normal once people realized I was very, very boring, I was suddenly breaking 100 likes. Hass, who does volunteer work as the social media coordinator for the American Gerbil Society, later clarified that she is not a scientist and based it off of a Google search. Researchers studying Asian elephants found the animals recognized themselves in mirrors. Rumor has it the infamously named town has officially been bowdlerized. A 2014 study published in the journal Peer J found that Asian elephants were able and willing to comfort a fellow elephant that had shown itself to be in distress. That means they are incredibly dangerous - just like us. Elephants are about as friendly as humans. Close. “Elephant-Initiated Interactions with Humans: Individual Differences and Specific Preferences in Captive African Elephants (Loxodonta africana).” Interestingly, societies form around females, while the males tend to be solitary wanderers, roaming from group to group in search of different mates. A mother elephant whose newborn has died will sometimes remain with the calf for days. It should be no surprise to anyone that our primate cousins are champion masturbators. The tweet’s spread was fueled by entertainment and content-aggregating web sites, which uncritically reposted it and reported Haas’ remark as scientific fact. The females, meanwhile, run the show in family groups. Elephants are much like humans. They have been known to pause over the body of a dead elephant and remain there in silence for long periods. Just like most people are either right-handed or left – handed, elephants have the same approach, only instead of it being in regards to hands, this refers to their preference of tusk usage. Which was nuts. The fact that we have become used to seeing them around people doesn’t mean that … For example, one study found that African elephants reacted with disdain to the sight or even smell of clothing worn by Maasai warriors. Which means, they can be incredibly friendly. The oldest and most dominant female is the family unit matriarch. have wild forebears which are largely untameable, many wild-caught elephants quickly and easily form intimate bonds with their keepers even though their wild temperament has never been modified through selective breeding. differentiate between gender and ethnicity in human voices. Elephants like Happy are remarkably intelligent animals. In that way, the males really maximize on the longevity of their bloodline, as they could potentially mate with dozens of females in a given year. When we hear stories of these animals being violent we have to remember that they are wild animals. Lynette Hart, a professor at the UC Davis school of veterinary medicine and one of the report’s authors, told us: We found that tamed African elephants preferentially and favorably interact (and initiate these interactions) with humans with whom they have a special relationship. It's not a myth: Elephants really do have sharp, long memories. A viral bit of copypasta falsely claiming to have been authored by Robert F. Kennedy Jr makes a series of erroneous claims about the science underlying two promising vaccines. Here's something not seen in many creatures outside of humans, apes and some dolphins: self awareness. The FDA wrote: "The observed frequency of reported Bell’s palsy in the vaccine group is consistent with the expected background rate in the general population.". “We’ve all missed holidays, family gatherings, and birthdays because the needs of our animals come first.” Elephant-like animals have lived on earth for more than 55 million years, far longer than we have. And in another great feat from our large-eared friends, a 2013 study showed that elephants also understand human pointing, something many great apes -- closer to us genetically -- can't even do. “FACTBOX: How Do You Domesticate an Elephant?” There is even anecdotal evidence that elephants can remember trainers who have treated them poorly in the past. Exactly how elephants do this has been a mystery — and while solving that mystery is not of first-order importance in understanding and preserving this largest of land animals, it would add new insight into how a whole range of species vocalize. By Frankie Schembri Aug. 15, 2018 , 12:45 PM. They live in complex social groups, cooperate to solve problems, recognize themselves in mirrors, use tools and even appear to … They are associated by means of various religious beliefs around the world.They are also see as a symbol of understanding and altruism. This tweet and others like it have been making the rounds lately:. I described this in an unrelated blog post as “the most pleasant going viral can be”, and I stick by that. Featured on "QI" and having been a topic of debate for a while at Frontier London HQ, we thought it was about time to fully look into it. African elephants make a specific alarm call in response to the danger of humans, according to a new study of wild elephants in Kenya. nsfw. Elephants may even shed tears of joy, or relief, when their suffering has been eased, as was witnessed in an Indian elephant freed after 50 years of abuse. World Elephant Day: 10 Ways Elephants Are Like Us In honor of World Elephant Day, we take a look at some of the traits these amazing giants have in common with people. Archived. Elephant herds are matriarchal; this may be linked to the fact that an elephant hers is considered one of the most closely knit societies of any animal, with females leaving their herd only if she dies.. or is captured by humans. They … It's tempting to think of elephants as giant, cheerless plodders lumbering across the landscape. Music is pretty universally enjoyed ... when it comes to people. There is no greater love amongst elephants than maternal. Hass told us she thinks the popularity of her tweet stems from people needing positivity during a time largely characterized by animus and conflict: I saw a lot of comments that said stuff like “at least elephants think I’m cute” or “thank you, I needed this”. A newborn calf in elephant society is quite a to-do, and females have been observed making loud calls and bellowing as a new calf is being born. The art of self-pleasure has been observed in males from about 80 species from ape to monkey to lemur, making it one of the most common and widespread primate sexual behaviors. While for the most part humans and elephants work well together, that isn’t always the case. Most humans have a dominant hand, and elephants too have a "handedness," of sorts. Following naturally upon elephants' displays of loss and grief are suggestions that they might even try to "inter," in their own way, their fallen fellow elephants. It is not uncommon for those with doctoral degrees to use the title, “Dr.”. A viral anti-vaccine video mangles the science behind the production of a potential COVID-19 vaccine. One elephant even noticed, and pointed at, a mark made on her face that she could only see thanks to the mirror. Indeed elephants have been observed laying branches and grass on top of carcasses, after standing over them to be sure the immobile animal was in fact dead. RELATED: Africa Could Lose 20 Percent of Elephants. Rumble in the jungle! Elephants have joined a small, elite group of species -- including humans, great apes and dolphins -- that have the ability to recognize themselves in the mirror, according to a new research finding. To help raise awareness of their plight, as well as to help people to understand just how socially complex elephants truly are, here are 10 ways elephants are like us I just read today that when an elephant see’s a human, it has similar chemical effects in the brain to when a human see’s a puppy or kitten. Here are seven scientific discoveries about … The team recorded the ways a seven-elephant herd treated not only their handlers, but volunteers at the park and tourists. RELATED: African Elephants in Zoos Threatened by Obesity. Loved by people the world over, these intelligent, social creatures share many traits in common with the species that gives them the most trouble. Also, an elephant (300 million neurons) has three times as many neurons as humans. They might also smell the body, touch it or even caress it.     24 December 2007. Reuters. Our very history is entwined, with elephants and humans evolving in parallel hundreds of thousands of years ago. Elephants were played recorded voices from several groups, and among the findings was that the creatures were able to identify voices belonging to threatening groups, moving away from those instinctively. Elephants have displayed distinctive mourning behavior, perhaps suggesting they have an inkling about the concept of death. Just when we thought elephants couldn't get more adorable ... Shutterstock ... we found out that baby elephants suck their trunks just like human babies suck their thumbs. Poachers aren't exactly willing to cough up thousands of dollars a year for elephant food either. Elephants live a long time but they don't get cancer like people do. 28 April 2017. In a year as tumultuous as 2020, we'd rather not time travel to the past. Some elephants form such warm and affectionate bonds with man as to deceive the observer into thinking that this animal must have been made truly domestic. The best way to answer the question of elephant-talk would be to examine the animal’s larynx. Theories abound that elephants are afraid of mice because the tiny creatures nibble on their feet or can climb up into their trunks. No one’s hit on me in DMs, threatened me, or been weird at all. They are known for their enormous size, their big ears, their long trunks and their memory. Lair, Richard C.   “Gone Astray – The Care and Management of the Asian Elephant in Domesticity.” Then my friends started sending me screencaps from meme accounts like Men’s Humor. They use their dominant tusk for digging up earth and uprooting trees, and they'll only go to the opposite tusk for those tasks if the dominant one is severely injured. October 1997. Sound familiar? We found that tamed African elephants preferentially and favorably interact (and initiate these interactions) with humans with whom they have a special relationship. So how do elephants see us? The comforting elephant would use its trunk to caress the troubled elephant, all the while making gentle chirping noises. It doesn't get less passionate after birth. Let's list some of the ways elephants are like us. “Our elephants are part of our family as much as our human partners are,” Kirtland says. Elephants rarely get cancer thanks to a ‘zombie’ gene. Females from at least 50 species also get into the act, and they can get creative: for example, female orangutans and capuchin monkeys have both been observed using sticks and other plant parts as makeshift dildos. The warriors were known, and remembered, by the elephants as a group that could cause them harm, as the warriors have been known to spear elephants in order to show off their masculinity. This material may not be reproduced without permission. We don’t know what elephants “think” about humans, but they appear to value certain relationships they have with certain humans. ©2020 Group Nine Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. Many other elephants in domesticity, however, remain unremittingly wild, hostile to man and ready to kill him at every chance. August 12 is World Elephant Day, first established in 2012 to bring attention to the plight of Asian and African elephants, which face habitat loss, threats from poachers, and mistreatment in captivity, among other species-threatening problems. Elephant societies are complex, the behaviors entrenched generation after generation, the roles of individuals guided by gender. The mother will be exceedingly vigilant with her new offspring -- keeping the tiny (by comparison) calf close, using her legs or trunk to nudge the child to its feet, even carrying the calf herself if the terrain doesn't permit the new arrival to make it on its own. An online ad promoting a list of restaurants closing in 2020 may have stopped breadstick-lovers in their tracks. Elephants have been known to induce … She may also experience a kind of depression afterward, walking slowly and barely able to keep pace with the rest of the herd. Elephants are a fraction of our life, culture and habits. Sometimes a bone or tusk will be carried away by the group. In 335 B.C. I haven’t been harassed. It's a tragedy for any animal to face extinction, but it would seem like a special tragedy to lose this one. Later that night I started getting alerts I was trending places, and my follows, which I thought would never break 1,000 in my wildest dreams, were breaking 1,500. Elephants make remarkable displays of joy and happiness, especially the young ones. As if that weren't enough, African elephants have been found to be able to differentiate between gender and ethnicity in human voices, according to a study released in 2014. RELATED: Legendary Elephant 'Satao' Killed by Poachers. RELATED: Elephants Added to List of Animals That Show Empathy. Hanako the baby arriving to Japan from Thailand. To add to this, elephants have a great encephalization quotient.Encephalization is defined as the amount of brain mass related to an animal’s total body mass. In a study published in April 2017, a team of researchers at the University of California-Davis reported variations in the types of interactions between elephants and humans at Knysna Elephant Park in West Cape, South Africa. Meyer explains that in the wild, elephants’ past experiences “have produced an evolutionary hard wiring that causes them to treat us the way that they would other big predators, like lions”. Afterwards, the Thai government, saying it wanted Japan’s children to see elephants, sent to Ueno Zoo in Tokyo 2-year-old elephant Kacha. An elephant has a very large brain. On 26 December 2017, Hass told us via e-mail that her search came in response to a Tumblr post: Elephants brain react to humans the same way that humans brain react to puppies: She told us that she realized the tweet was gaining traction when she began getting repeated phone notifications: It was exhausting and anxiety-provoking and I had to mute everything pretty fast, so after the first thousand likes, I genuinely tuned out. These findings may directly impact protocols for future efforts to conserve elephants, which are in danger of extinction in this century due to increased poaching and human/elephant conflict. As we’ve seen above, elephants display human-like behavior, such as expressing grief, mimicking, understanding finger-pointing, using tools, memory, compassion, cooperation, self-awareness, and communication. Julia‏ @JuliaHass. At least, the trainers seem to think so. In late 2020, internet users highlighted a shocking episode from the legendary blues guitarist's past. An Asian elephant named Koshik was able to understand a limited vocabulary of Korean words and also could imitate human speech in order to say the words. But nothing could be further from the truth. Elephants will splash around in the water just for the fun of it, jostle each other, and even call out to each other from far away, in anticipation of a reunion, when a prodigal elephant is returning to its group. Apparently they think we’re cute! I just learned that elephants think humans are cute the way humans think puppies are cute (the same part of the brain lights up when they see us) so pack it in, nothing else this pure and good is happening today. Clearly, a domesticated elephant is simply a wild animal in chains — but a wild animal frequently gentle and intelligent enough to be totally trustworthy as a baby-sitter to watch over human infants. Scientists think they know why. Just like we use our favorite hand for heavy lifting and complicated tasks, elephants use their favorite tusk for uprooting trees and digging up earth. Males will typically leave this unit to begin their wandering ways by the time they reach 15 years of age. Elephants nonetheless can be extremely unpredictable in their behaviors to people. The passionate mom will protect her child from predators and even provide shade by standing over it.     Frontiers in Veterinary Science. TIL Elephants have breasts that look just like humans' but with elephant skin. They have hands, after all. TIL Elephants have breasts that look just like humans' but with elephant skin. They prefer to use one tusk over another -- be they right-tusked or left-tusked. Top 10 Very Interesting Facts about Elephants. Everyone’s been quite lovely, actually. TIME's choices for Person of the Year are often controversial. No men tried to explain stuff to me in the replies, or have tried to explain stuff to me since (some kind of Christmas miracle record). Elephants are self-aware animals, and are highly intelligent. Posted by 1 year ago. In fact, out of all land mammals, an elephant’s brain is the biggest.     Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Snopes and the Snopes.com logo are registered service marks of Snopes.com. Do you consider a story in a tabloid "front page news"? They can remember injuries they have incurred and they can hold grudges against those who have given them trouble. Also horrendously hostile and violent. Animals, on the other hand, have diverse reactions to tunes. A few people have even helped me raise some money for charity, too, which is nice. To know you're looking at "yourself" in a reflection is a neat trick not many animals can pull off, but elephants can do it with aplomb. Mom will also bathe her child, and she'll be quick to offer protection if the calf makes loud distress noises. An incredible moment at Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai, Thailand, showing the bond between Sangduen "Lek" Chailert and a young elephant named Faa Mai. 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