Friday, 18 September 2015

It's a Monster! Apes Remember Scary Movie Scenes

by James Gaines, Live Science Contributor | September 17, 2015 12:52pm ET

If you've seen the movie "Psycho," you probably cringe in anticipation while rewatching the famous scene where actress Janet Leigh steps into the shower. Now, scientists have found that great apes may also remember and anticipate memorable on-screen events as well.

Many scientists have tried to piece together how memories work in animals, especially chimpanzees and other apes. One common test, for example, is to see if animals can watch and remember where someone else hid some food. In a new study, scientists from Kyoto University in Japan wanted to examine whether a group of chimpanzees and bonobos (a close chimp relative) could not only remember past events, but also anticipate what would happen next.

To test this idea, the scientists turned to the silver screen. "We really wanted to make [the apes] remember a novel event," said study co-author Fumihiro Kano, a comparative psychologist at Kyoto University. 

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