Brain size linked to self control

The larger an animal's brain, the more self-control and cognitive ability it has. That's total brain size and not volume related to the size of the animal's body, concludes a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Researchers looked at 36 species of animals and birds, ranging from orangutans to zebra finches in a series of food-foraging experiments. They also found that animals with the most varied diets showed the most self-restraint.

One experiment looked at large and small animals, and tested them to see if they would advance toward a clear cylinder with visible food after they had been trained to access food through a side opening in an opaque cylinder. Large-brained primates, such as gorillas could quickly navigate to the food, but smaller-brained animals did not consistently get it.

The scientists noted that as the brain gets larger, the total number of neurons increases, which could result in the development of new cognitive networks.

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Sourced from: ScienceDaily, Brain size matters when it comes to animal self-control