From: ScienceDaily
Published June 17, 2009 10:39 AM

Common Fish Species Has 'Human' Ability To Learn

Although worlds apart, the way fish learn could be closer to humans' way of thinking than previously believed, suggests a new research study.

A common species of fish which is found across Europe including the UK, called the nine-spined stickleback, could be the first animal shown to exhibit an important human social learning strategy. The sticklebacks can compare the behavior of other sticklebacks with their own experience and make choices that lead to better food supplies, according to the study by St Andrews and Durham universities.

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The researchers suggest these fish might have an unusually sophisticated social learning capability not yet found in other animals, called a 'hill-climbing' strategy.

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