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Thread: Are sheep intelligent

  1. #1

    Are sheep intelligent

    Hi,

    I know that on a different thread injuries to sheep where likened to that in deer.
    I was one of the believers of this theory and some whom farmed sheep also agreed.
    I having read this report and heard the in depth version on the radio felt it was worth mentioning here.
    I know the "don't Humanise deer" is a very wide spread thought and is too the idea that deer are not creatures of habit to a certain degree.
    What this study does show is that the deer ( if as intelligent as sheep ) may well be able to associate certain things to possible events.
    Not only this, but they(deer) if you assume the above, come to the conclusion that they learn from experiences.

    atb f.

    BBC News - Study shows Welsh sheep

  2. #2
    You've missed the most relevant point cbs. The report is about the intelligence of WELSH sheep. I have evidence to support this fact.

    Looking out of the kitchen window one day at a small flock of old ewes in a paddock I noticed one had strayed away from the others and sunk up to her belly in marshy ground. After much pulling and heaving I eventually got her back onto solid ground and walked back to the house. I looked around and there she was again, back in the middle of the mire and sinking like a torpedoed Zeppelin. Thunderbirds went to her rescue a second time.

    The flock on dry ground was a straggly collection of various Welsh breeds, the one that walked right back into the bog - a Suffolk. I rest my case.

    Happy St Davids Day to one and all.
    /l\ Y gwir yn erbyn y byd /l\

  3. #3
    Is there any other animal that spends all its time waiting for the most inconvenient time to die than a sheep? Intelligent maybe, bloody awkward definitely.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottC View Post
    Is there any other animal that spends all its time waiting for the most inconvenient time to die than a sheep? Intelligent maybe, bloody awkward definitely.

    In a lifetime of keeping sheep I never cease to marvel at their sheer inventiveness. Sheep are to suicide what Einstein was to physics.

  5. #5
    Hi All
    That is why the welsh have their own tartan and wear kilts because the sheep got to recognise the sound of zips
    Geordie

  6. #6
    I think it is correct that sheep, and deer, are good at spatial things and this is what we would expect as they have evolved to use the landscape to their advantage. Just watch how the sheep, or deer, move according to the weather and how they can usually find the best shelter under any conditions.

    However, this is an evolved reaction to being given a poke by the conditions. They remain simple animals that don't cope especially well with novel conditions or circumstances. My girlfriend's sheep if left at the gate when they are put out to the moor will stand by the gate untl they eat all the available feeding and starve to death. It is necessary to take the dog and walk them out quite a distance onto the moor before they get the message that they are on the moor and have to fend for themselves. Their evolution has not, as yet, taught them that when they are put out the gate they are on the moor and so have to think about where their food comes from but forcing them out onto the hill seems to "prime" their little brain with the idea that something has changed and that they need to be smart about getting food and shelter.

    It is also the case that it is very important to be very wary of all media reporting of science. One Nature paper I read a while back contained, in the text of the paper, the very explicit statement "What this does not mean is X" (I can't remember the exact statement now) I turned on the radio to hear a news report telling me that Nature had published an exciting new paper which proved that X was happening. Unless you see the paper yourself, don't trust the media to report science.

  7. #7
    I have had sheep on my ground now for about 5 years. It has been without doubt the most miserable experience I can imagine any stock owner having. They are extremely simple creatures. They will try and get through a fence to graze inferior grass to where they have just come from. They find new and cunning ways of dying and they are hard work. When I watch Monty Don encouraging new farmers to have sheep it makes me cringe. When the new inexperienced owner finds his/her newly acquired animals with fleeces full of maggots there blissful living off the land bubble will burst pretty quickly. I am replacing my sheep with deer and so far its is a much more rewarding experience.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by geordieh View Post
    Hi All
    That is why the welsh have their own tartan and wear kilts because the sheep got to recognise the sound of zips
    Geordie
    Why bother with a woman when you can have the real thing bach

    I thought I'd get it in before you poor Englishmen decided to collectively voice your inner thoughts !

    Rocky
    The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottC View Post
    Is there any other animal that spends all its time waiting for the most inconvenient time to die than a sheep? Intelligent maybe, bloody awkward definitely.
    Could not agree more

  10. #10
    There's nothing like an okkud owd yowe to get yer temper up. Brewis should be required reading for any aspiring sheep farmer.

    I think the author of 'The Bunny Suicides' series got the wrong animal.

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