Australia's cockatoos taught each other to open trash cans for food, study finds

Australia's cockatoos taught each other to open trash cans for food, study finds

(CNN)A few years ago, Australian scientist Richard Major took a video of a cockatoo in Sydney opening a closed trash bin lid with its beak and foot to access the gold mine of leftover food inside. He shared it with Barbara Klump and Lucy Aplin, both researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Animal Behavior in Germany -- and they were immediately fascinated. "It was so exciting to observe such an ingenious and innovative way to access a food resource, we knew immediately that we had to systematically study this unique foraging behavior," said Klump, a postdoctoral research fellow at the institute in a news release. It's a five-stage process for the birds to open the bin lid, according to the study. The bird has to pry open the lid with its beak, twist its neck sideways and hop onto to the edge of the bin, hold it open with its beak or foot, walk along the rim, and finally flip the lid open. On Thursday, the scientists published their findings in the journal Science, which found that the iconic …
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