NOT THE BIG ONE as the ape man missing link! wheres the fish with feet? Wheres the plants with a brain? The hype is over done and people should see it
for what it is, a fosilized creature with fingers and fingernails. Yes it is a great find but really it isnt that important its not the big one!
"Plants do not think in the way humans do, but they do take in information and respond to it. Plants take cues from their environment to ‘decide’
when to send up shoots, set buds or abscise leaves. Some plants react to attacks by predators by releasing chemical warning signals that are sensed by
other plants in the area. Scientists are debating whether these reactions should be considered intelligent.
Researchers are studying signal transduction to learn more about how genetic and hormonal orders are carried out by plants. At present our
understanding of the complex interactions of genes and environmental stimuli is limited. Recent research has found that plants have neurotransmitters
very similar to those found in humans. A new field, plant neurobiology, has arisen to study the chemical mechanisms behind the growth of plants and
their responses to the environment.
While conversations with plants seem unlikely, the research may lead to some limited communication with our green partners. One day it may be possible
to read the chemical signs to determine a plant’s needs before obvious signs appear. "
"The Red Parrot Fish
It is known that some cichlids can recognize the world outside their tank, and may follow fingers across the glass, etc. The red parrot fish, in
particular, has been reported to be trained to eat out of the owner’s hands. It has a reputation for "intelligence," "personality," and the
ability to adapt. Therefore, this fish seemed a good candidate to study.
The red parrot fish is a hybrid between two species: the golden severum and the red devils. These fish belong to the family Cichlidae, which contains
over 1200 species, and are a representative of bony fish with a well-developed dorsal fin. Complex instinctual behaviors by these fish have been well
studied. Using its protractile mouth, it has mastered some very complicated mouth breeding techniques.
The red parrot’s eye, which is one of the qualities of fish I tested, is similar to the eye of humans. We share the same basic visual structures: a
cornea, an iris, a lens and a retina. The retina contains rods (which detect black and white), and/or cones (which detect color). The presence of
cones in some fish’s eyes indicates that fish should be able to see color.
I tested the fish in three different ways: discerning color, number and shapes. Here is the technique:
1. First, I trained the fish to follow my finger across the outside of the glass, and dropped food into the tank near my finger. This trained the
fish to associate that "finger = food."
2. Then, I substituted an 8 cm red cap for my finger, and did the same thing (I used the lid of the TetraMin container). After several weeks, he
was able to discern that the "red cap = food." Already, this demonstrated that the fish could make new connections of facts. He can learn!
3. Next, I did a test to see whether he could discern red from brown. First, I placed two small food granules on top of the red disk. With my index
finger, I covered the food on the red cap. I put the index finger of my other hand on the same place on the brown disc - but no food was hidden on
that side. Standing about half a meter away from the tank with the two discs close together, I paused for five seconds. Then I moved forward slowly,
spreading the caps apart (I had to look up to avoid watching the fish, so that his movements would not influence me). Whichever circle the fish went
to first (within a few centimeters) was his choice. When he was right, I gave him the food; when he was wrong, I did not. When he was wrong, I took
the wrong cap away and showed him the right one. I would randomly switch which hand had the red cap. Then every two minutes I would repeat the
experiment, five times total each night, recording the results each time.
4. After several weeks, I gave him a final test: five trials in the morning, and five trials in the evening for two days. Could he learn that "red
= food" but "brown = no food?" If he could learn that, it would prove that he could distinguish colors as well.
5. Next, I tested if he could distinguish abstract symbols. I put a 3 cm "O" on one 8 cm diameter white paper disc, and a 3 cm "*" on another
white paper disc. He only got the food reward if he first approached the "O" disc.
6. Finally, can he count? On one white disc, I placed a single 1 cm solid dot. On the other, I placed three of the dots. Could he be trained to
come only to the single dot? "
What are you looking for exactly for "The big one". A fish with a human brain? A plant that does the Cha Cha?