Baby Budgie: Day 06 - Self Recognition "Those who see"
I was sitting at my desk typing when Danny started screeching. It's kinda like a budgies version of 'crying' or the sound they make when they are afraid or angry or very annoyed. If you try to grab one or are holding it when it does want to be it goes "Waara wraaaa weraaaaaa ch ch ch chhhh chh chhshh" and is kinda squeaky too. She has only done it a couple times so far and they do it less as they get older unless they get really angry. It's similar to how children cry a lot when they are little and then less and less as they get older. It's just like a dog crying or a cat meowing when it's getting a bath.
It surprised me but at the same time it wasn't quite a "I'm hurt" cry either. It was like "i'm a little freaked out." - huh? Why is she doing that? I look over and she had seen a mirror for the first time! I put up some paper over an area of my desk like a barrier so she wouldn't go behind my tv or fall off. The paper I used had a reflective surface on one side. So she must have walked by it and saw herself and got scared and started screaming - but like I said the scream was more of a "hey Hey you scared me stop it" and not a "I'm really hurt help."
By the time I could start recording she had already moved on from the 'scared' to the super curious stage.
Its a very common test of an animals level of intelligence if they are able to look in a mirror and realize that it's themselves and not another animal looking back. If you put a mirror up to a monkey it will act like it's another monkey. If you put a mirror up to an ape or a dolphin or an elephant( or a parrot?) - they will realize it's actually a reflection of themselves. How can you tell if they can tell? One way is to put something on their face like a marker or something and if they then see their own face they will see a mark on it and then touch their own face in real life. So that means they have correlated that the image that they are seeing is really them. Usually it's pretty obvious when something recognizes itself in a mirror because of how they 'play' with it. The animals that know it's them will start to make faces and look in their mouth - the animals that don't will try to get behind the mirror or act as if it's another animal and not themselves.
My question is coincidentally related to one of my favorite Leonardo da Vinci quotes:
"There are three classes of people: Those who see, those who see when they are shown, and those who do not see."
In this context you could use it to describe those capable of self recognition in a mirror. Another thing to consider is that an animal's (and humans) age is a factor. A baby might not recognize itself in a mirror but as it gets older and 'wiser' it goes through a level of development that enables it to finally recognize itself. If you imagine that an animal probably goes through the same stage and then you realize that there is a brief period from when they first see their first mirror to when they finally 'realize' its 'them" - that 'brief period' of recognition could be longer for some than others. What this means is that it's possible for some animals/ people to not instantly recognize their reflections or the concept at first - but could eventually and independently. It could also mean that there are those who are capable of comprehending the concept but would require someone to "show" them. There are others that no matter what cannot comprehend the concept at all. They would always think that the image in a mirror is "Another animal" and not themselves. You can see where the quote from Leonardo fits perfectly in this context and it could very well be exactly what he is referring to.
In this video I would say Mitso realizes it's not another budgie - or at least that it's the same budgie every time. Does he know that it's himself? Is it something that he could come to realize if you showed him?