The cradle of avian social cognition – the sociality of extinct dinosaurs

Projekt: Forskning


This project delivers the first reconstructions of the evolution of social cognition in the extinct dinosaur lineage that led to birds, the avian dinosaurs. Exploring the evolution of social cognition is key for understanding the emergence of complex cognition as a whole. Cognitive evolution reveals itself in behavioral comparisons of species in strategic phylogenetic positions. However, such comparisons have not systematically enquired the historical depths of the animal kingdom, which is why we lack knowledge about how cognition transformed through geological time, leaving us largely ignorant about nature’s bauplan for its most extraordinary creation. This project starts mending this gap by comparing the closest living relatives of non-avian dinosaurs – palaeognath birds and crocodilians – in fundamental socio-cognitive skills.
Gällande start-/slutdatum2020/09/012024/08/31


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