An evolution of intelligence epiphany

There’s a ring necked pheasant who wanders around in our backyard.  I was watching it today and I had an epiphany on the evolution of intelligence.  I’m sure I’m not the first person to think of this, but it was a new thought to me.

The pheasant would peck at the ground, then raise its head to look around, peck, look around, and so on.  It was constantly on the lookout for danger.  I – on the other hand – just sat and watched it.  And I remembered reading in a scifi novel what I assume is a real biology joke, that carnivores are more likely to develop intelligence than herbivores because you don’t need to be that smart to sneak up on a blade of grass.  What this has to do with the pheasant and I, is that while it was nervous and always checking for danger, I could just focus on it:  I didn’t have to worry about being attacked.  Now you may say that’s just because I’m a human, but think of lions just focused upon some gazelles.  And what I wondered from all this is, is the mental discipline to concentrate upon one thing a benefit of intelligence, a prerequisite of intelligence, or – more likely – a combination of both?  Just an interesting thought I had.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: