Tagged With behavioral science

It turns out goats really do know that you’re trouble when you walk in. These domestic animals can distinguish human facial expressions, and prefer a pleasant smile to a disgruntled frown, according to new research.

The indigenous people of Easter Island, the Rapa Nui, experienced a societal collapse after the 17th century because they stripped the island clean of its natural resources. Or at least, that’s the leading theory. An analysis of the tools used by the Rapa Nui to build their iconic stone statues suggests a very different conclusion, pointing to the presence of a highly organised and cohesive society.

It's very easy to look at an animal mimicking a human-like behaviour and think, "Wow! That animal is doing a human thing! It looks so cute and happy." (Because humans are so cute and happy, right?) That is almost never the case. If an animal looks weird, it probably is weird - and not in a good way.

Researchers at Queen Mary University in London peered into the beady square pupil eyes of a goat and asked the single worst question one can ask about a goat: "Could this thing be more like a dog?"