【听力文摘】什么动物和人类最像?

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2013-11-21 14:48

【听力文摘】什么动物和人类最像?

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What Animals Are Most Like People

Once again we go to the mailbag. A listener writes:

Dear A Moment of Science, Besides chimps, which animals do you think are the most like people?

It’s Prairie Dogs!

Scientists have closely studied prairie dog chirps and found that they’re really complex.

You know how some animals have warning calls such as warning shrieks or yells that alert their group when a predator is nearby?

Prairie dogs do this, too, but in a way that’s impressively detailed. For example, they not only have specific chirps for different kinds of predators, but also for specific details about what the predators look like.

Size, Shape, And Clothes!

Yes. In fact, they’d exchange information not only about your presence but about what you look like your size, shape, and the color of your clothes.

How Do Scientists Know?

They did a cool little experiment where they sent the same person into a prairie dog colony at different times, wearing different colored tee shirts. When they analyzed the animals’ alarm calls they found that they used the same ones for the person’s size and shape, but different ones depending on the color of the tee shirt.


And it speaks to the larger point that humans are not the only animals with a sophisticated language system. Ours may be the most complex, but it’s only one among many other, non human descriptive languages.

什么动物和人类最像

我们又一次打开邮箱。一位听众写到
亲爱的科学一刻,除了黑猩猩,你认为哪种动物最像人类?

是草原狗!

科学家仔细研究了草原狗的叫声,发现这很复杂。

你知道当有捕食者靠近时,一些动物会发出警号信号比如叫声或呼喊来警告同伴么?

草原狗也有这种行为。而且在某种程度上,草原狗的具体行为令人印象深刻。例如,草原狗不仅对特定的捕猎者有特定的叫声,对于捕猎者的外貌也有特定的细节描述。

高矮,体型和衣服!

是的,事实上,他们不仅交流你出现的信息,还会讨论你的高矮和体型,你衣服的颜色。

科学家们是如何知道的?

他们做了一个很酷的小实验,在不同的时间里,让同一个人穿着不同颜色的T恤进入草原狗的领地。当科学家们分析动物的警觉信号时,他们发现动物用同样的叫声表示人的高矮和体型,但是会根据T恤的颜色改变叫声。

从更深层次的角度上说,人类不是唯一具有复杂语言系统的生物。我们的语言可能是最复杂的,但是只是许多其它非人类描述性语言中的一种。

【本译文由普特网友 李营_d987 提供】