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Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

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Archerfish says… ‘I spit in your face!’

4 minutes

What the spitting archerfish might tell us about small-brain intelligence

The archerfish can spit water with remarkable accuracy at targets up to six feet away, giving it the evolutionarily advantageous ability to hunt prey on land from the water. Even more intriguing is the idea that archerfish can recognise faces and use water as a tool, making them part of an extremely small – but apparently growing – club of animals with a particular sort of intelligence. Informed by a study published in Nature in 2016, this short video from Deep Look probes what the archerfish can tell us about the increasingly dubious link between brain size and intelligence. Read more about the video at KQED Science.

Video by KQED Science and PBS Digital Studios

Producer: Elliott Kennerson

Narrator and Writer: Amy Standen

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Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.
But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.
But we can’t do it without you.

Support Aeon

Essay/
Physics
Going nowhere fast

After the success of the Standard Model, experiments have stopped answering to grand theories. Is particle physics in crisis?

Ben Allanach

Essay/
Space Exploration
What if ET is an AI?

After centuries searching for extraterrestrial life, we might find that first contact is not with organic creatures at all

Caleb Scharf