Fri, May 05, 2006 - Page 20 News List

Bird brains? 小鳥的「大」腦?

A racing pigeon stands on its cage in Jakarta.
雅加達一隻賽鴿在牠的籠子上。 (照片:美聯社)


Birds may have really small brains, but that doesn't mean they are stupid. For example, pigeons are much smarter birds than you might think.

There are some pigeons that know how to find their home from hundreds of kilometers away without getting lost. Because of this special ability, people used to use pigeons to carry messages over long distances. They would write a message on a piece of paper and tie it to their pigeon's leg, then let it go. In fact, there were some armies that used pigeons to deliver messages during wars as late as the 1950s. Now that everybody has a telephone, people don't need pigeons to deliver messages. Instead, they use them for fun. All over the world, there are pigeon races to see whose pigeon can fly home the fastest.

(Marc Langer, staff writer)



如今人人有電話,不再需要飛鴿傳書,於是改而用鴿子來娛樂。全世界都有賽鴿活動,比賽誰的鴿子最快回到家。 (翻譯:鄭湘儀)

Quick Quiz 複習測驗

1. People used to tie messages to a pigeon's ...

a. wing.

b. leg.

c. neck.

d. beak.

2. Today, people use pigeons for ...

a. war.

b. delivering messages.

c. racing.

d. finding their houses.

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