London: Pigs might not be able to fly but they do have other talents. The “Mr. Smarty Pant” animal can learn how to interpret an image in the mirror and use it to find hidden food, say scientists.
According to scientists, the ability to use a mirror is a sign of complex cognitive processing and an indication of a certain level of awareness.
In addition to humans and some primates, dolphins, elephants and magpies have all been known to retrieve objects or remove marks on their body using a mirror.
And now, after the new study, it seems pigs should too be added to the list of clever critters, reports New Scientist.
In the research, Donald Broom at the University of Cambridge placed food where it was only visible in a mirror, while a fan wafted its scent away from the pigs.
Seven of eight pigs tested took less than a minute to learn how to use the mirror to find the food, the study published in Animal Behaviour found.
"Pigs are keenly aware of what is happening around them," says Marc Bekoff of the University of Colorado, Boulder.