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5 Animals with Incredible Memories

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2. Elephants.

Nobody can hold a grudge like an elephant. The animals live in close-knit social groups, and are able to identify at least 30 of their relatives. Their incredible capacity to remember also plays into the fact that, well, few animals can hold a grudge quite like elephants. One study that looked at a herd of African elephants found that the animals reacted negatively to the scents of a nearby tribe whose members sometimes slaughter them. Elephants have also been known to remember human abusers several years afterward. More recently, a herd of Indian elephants refused to leave the site where one of their members was struck and killed by a train, damaging several structures along the way.

Related: 8 Famous Animals (Slideshow)

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Read more: Behavior & Communication, Mental Wellness, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Pets, Wildlife, ,

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Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives in Oakland, California.

572 comments

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9:18AM PDT on May 16, 2015

Really interesting.

I believe what you write about ravens. They are regular visitors here and have excellent memories about when and what and how much I have fed them. I follow current guidelines which say to vary the quantity and frequency of food so that they don't become reliant on it; it's just an extra treat and helps them through inclement weather.
They apparently haven't read the guidelines. They know when I'll be watching my favourite tv shows and will sit on the fence outside my window and kick up a fuss. Recently a mother came with her baby and she was clearly teaching him how to do it.

Impossible to get mad at them when they are so smart and so beautiful; and don't they know it!

10:10PM PDT on Jul 17, 2014

Animals are compassionate, intelligent, sentient beings. They're very similar to us; while they still do have their differences. I believe animals are the most effective form of therapy you can ever give someone.

10:06AM PDT on Jun 22, 2014

Thanks for sharing this, absolutely fascinating although not overly surprising! Animals have remarkable intelligence that they are sometimes not credited for.

1:09PM PDT on May 13, 2014

thanks for sharing :)

5:47AM PST on Feb 13, 2014

Thank you for this article. I am not surprised, whatever made us think that we are the "cream of the crop"? There is so much intelligence in the universe, not necessarily in the human world

11:48AM PDT on Oct 26, 2013

that's exciting about the ravens. They have such personalities. I'm not surprised they can remember.

3:09PM PDT on Oct 15, 2013

Agree. Animals are sharper than us!

7:44AM PDT on Oct 4, 2013

i think animals have better memory and better senses than humans .

8:16PM PDT on Oct 2, 2013

I get the feeling you don't want to get on the bad side with ANY bird.

5:57AM PDT on Oct 2, 2013

Thanks for the article.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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