Apparently These Sheep Can Recognize Emma Watson and Barack Obama

Apparently These Sheep Can Recognize Emma Watson and Barack Obama

During the training period at the University of Cambridge, the animals learned to recognize celebrities in forward-facing photos. The sheep were having two options in each step as a photo of celebrity face or another is of something else.

Among the faces they were trained to recognize were former President Barack Obama and actress Emma Watson.

Sheep learnt to recognise Barack Obama after being shown his photo a few dozen times, said a study on November 8 which suggested our four-legged friends may be smarter than we think.

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Sheep can recognize human faces in photos at a level that's comparable to humans.

Picking the celebrity earned a sheep a food-pellet reward. Eight times out 10 the sheep picked the celebrity. Researchers from Cambridge's Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience trained eight sheep to recognise the faces of four celebrities from photographic portraits displayed on computer screens. "Our study gives us another way to monitor how these abilities change", Morton said.

"Sheep are long-lived and have brains that are similar in size and complexity to those of some monkeys".

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Scientists found that sheep have facial recognition abilities akin to those of humans or monkeys, according to Jenny Morton, the lead scientist in the study. (A sheep might have had to select Emma Watson vs. a football helmet or gas lamp, for instance.) The third test pitted the sheep's celebrity targets against unfamiliar humans. "Sheep successfully recognized the four celebrity faces from tilted images". Then, during the trials, the sheep were released into a pen where they had to discern between the familiar faces and an object or an unfamiliar face.

The new evidence suggests that sheep can process information about a human face without requiring a 3-D "real person", said Morton.

When the handler's face was shown, sheep picked it seven out of 10 times. In these initial tests, the sheep were shown the faces from the front, but to test how well they recognised the faces, the researchers next showed them the faces at an angle.

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