Elephants Can Paint?

See this elephant paint a portrait of himself:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=He7Ge7Sogrk[/youtube]

I got the idea to post this from Brian Donohue’s post here.

UPDATE: Here’s a petition link to oppose South Africa’s plan to kill elephants.

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  1. Brian Donohue’s avatar

    Very important to add the petition link to induce the SA gov’t to reinstate the ban on elephant murder. The other attraction of that link is getting into the care2 network, which has one of the cooler and more functional social networking interfaces I’ve encountered on the web. It sure beats myspace.

  2. Mardé’s avatar

    Thanks, Brian, for adding that petition link. I already signed the petition yesterday but forgot to add it to the post here. Thanks, Brian!

    I’ll have to check into care2 network. Thanks for the tip on that.

  3. Dragonstar’s avatar

    I’ve watched this video a couple of times now, and a related one. I’m still having a hard time believing, although I know elephants are reputed to be very intelligent. It’s a wonderful video.

  4. Mardé’s avatar

    You may be right. I tried to track down more info on elephants’ ability to paint, but didn’t get too far. I think I did read that one version was that a trainer has conditioned the elephant to make a certain brush stroke when prodded in a certain spot with a stick, each spot corresponding to a different brush stroke. But this seems far-fetched? Maybe they do paint!

  5. judith’s avatar

    I think elephants are wonderful creatures and probably more intellegent than we’ve given them credit for in the past. This sort of thing is OK as long as no cruelty is involved. The same applies to any animal being taught ‘tricks’. If they enjoy it that’s fine, otherwise leave them alone.

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