Green Heron captured using bread as FISHING BAIT in astonishing show of deferred gratification
Move over Kanzi; there”s a new tool-wielding creature catching more than just attention.
Just days after Kanzi the bonobo chimp stunned researchers around the world by creating his own tools similar to man to access food, a Green Heron has shown its own ability to bait and catch fish.
Carrying a piece of bread to the water”s edge, the tiny heron is captured on camera repeatedly dropping the bait onto the surface, carefully, to attract the surrounding fish.
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Sneaky skill: A Green Heron captured on camera has displayed its own ability to bait and catch fish using bread
Careful placement: The heron is seen carefully placing the bread before the water”s shoreline
Waiting game: After dropping the bread into the water, the heron watches carefully without moving
After several nips from below and the bread”s frequent removal and replacement, the bird lunges forward, returning with a large fish between its beak.
As io9 notes, the bird appears to display a logical thought process of choosing not to satisfy itself with immediate gratification with the bread’s consumption but to delay satisfaction for the potential capture of a fish instead.
According to a 1986 report out of the University of Tokyo, however, bait-fishing by the Green Heron is nothing new though extremely unique.
It is a skill that”s only performed by a select few species of birds, while only by a select few of Green Herons depending on the birds” location.
Nips: After several bites along the water”s surface, the heron nears its pounce
Snatched! Pinching the wriggling fish between its beak, the heron is seen having successfully swapped out its bread for a much more hearty meal in the fish
As their study of Green-backed Herons in southern Japan concludes:
“Bait fishing was used most frequently by the individual which fished often in open water with fewer suitable rocks, where the heron has to overcome the handicap of being easily seen by fish.”
Most Green Herons are said to use feathers, small sticks or berries as their bait.
Mission accomplished: The heron maneuvers the live fish in its mouth before swallowing it whole as one of only several species of birds who use bait fishing
Others: World-famous bonobo chimp Kanzi, pictured using a stick to roast a marshmallow, recently stunned researchers by creating his own tools as a means to extract food from a container
Whether the bread was directly supplied to the heron by a human – presumably for the bird’s own consumption – or how else it was obtained is not supplied with the video’s upload.
One YouTube viewer and fan of the video notes: “Next time we”ll see giant eagles baiting humans with $100 bills.”
Watch the video here: