5 Animals with Incredible Memories


Newsflash to humans: we are not always the best and the brightest at everything. Yep, there are plenty of other members of the animal kingdom out there with stronger senses, speedier travel time and, yes, better memories. Click through to check out some of the most impressive animal minds on the planet.

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They may not look particularly threatening, but ravens are one animal you really don’t want to annoy. That’s because, amazingly enough, ravens actually remember your face and your voice — and connect it to any prior interactions. The birds actually change their calls based on whether you’re a friend or an enemy — †If you’re the latter, their call will be lower and rougher. Happening upon a stranger raven? Expect an even less friendly call.

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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.

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3. Dolphins.

By many measures, dolphins are one of the most intelligent creatures on the planet, and they are certainly no slouch in the memory department. Dolphins have been shown to recognize old friends after decades of separation. They even have something akin to names — a whistle unique to each animal!

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4. Horses.

Many horse lovers have long claimed that their old pals remember them after years of separation, and, now there’s the science to back up these claims. Like dolphins and elephants, wild horses live in tight-knit communities, and thus benefit from having a strong capacity for remembering others. Horses in captivity experience, research has shown, a similar relationship with humans. After long periods of separation, horses will remember their human pal.

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5. Chimpanzees.

There are many, many ways to demonstrate the intelligence and memory†of chimps. but this one has to be the funniest: Chimps actually remember how much (or how little) †members of their troop have groomed them, and dole out their grooming accordingly. Whether you’re selfish or selfless, chances are, a chimp will remember.

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Paula A
Paula A21 days ago

thank you

William C
William C8 months ago


W. C
W. C8 months ago

Thank you.

Christine Jones
Christine J3 years ago

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!

Taylor Story
Taylor Story4 years ago

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.

Francesca A-S
Past Member 4 years ago

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

Carrie-Anne Brown

thanks for sharing :)

Gabriella Bertelmann
G Bertelmann4 years ago

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

Azaima A.
Azaima A5 years ago

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

John Wesen
Past Member 5 years ago

Agree. Animals are sharper than us!