The Seattle Times

GRAEME SHANNON / AP
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Monday, March 10, 2014

Elephants prove discerning listeners of us humans

This photo provided by the University of Sussex, taken in April 2011, shows a wild elephant in Amboseli National Park in Kenya reacting to sound played by scientists in experiments that show they can distinguish between human languages and genders. Elephants are so clever they use their famed memory to be discriminating listeners of us humans. That way they can determine who is a threat and who isn't, according to study released Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. This is an advanced thinking skill that no other non-human animal have demonstrated, scientists say.