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09 November 2017, 12:51 | Camille Rivera
A sheep. Smarter than it looks. Wolfgang Kaehler LightRocket via Getty Images
Neuroscientists from the University of Cambridge posted a report in the Royal Society Open Science journal on Tuesday asserting that sheep are capable of distinguishing faces of animals, humans, celebrities and even former President Barak Obama as well. In each step, the sheep were presented with two options: a photo of the celebrity facing forward for the camera, or a photo of something else. Out of the all the shown photos, the sheep chose celebrities Jake Gyllenhaal, Barack Obama, Emma Watson, and United Kingdom television journalist Fiona Bruce.
Sheep learnt to recognise Barack Obama after being shown his photo a few dozen times, said a study on November 8 which suggested our four-legged friends may be smarter than we think.
EWE AGAIN Sheep were trained to recognize celebrity faces, demonstrating that the animals can recognize a familiar human face from a 2-D image.
Picking the celebrity earned a sheep a food-pellet reward.
When they were tested if they could perform without the rewards, the sheep were able to recognize the celebrities faces eight out of 10 times, Sky Newsreported.
Sheep can be trained to recognize celebrities like Barack Obama and Jake Gyllenhaal, new research shows.
The ability to recognise faces is one of the most important human social skills.
The team got success after few days of tutelage of sheep at the Cambridge University in England, where at least 8 sheep could recognize Obama by his picture.
"This face recognition task will allow us to test whether or not sheep carrying the Huntington's disease gene mutation are impaired in their ability to think and reason", Morton explained. "Although I didn't think sheep could recognize emotion, it made me think about face recognition as a complex brain process". In these initial tests, the sheep were shown the faces from the front, but to test how well they recognised the faces, the researchers next showed them the faces at an angle.
Given this ability, the study authors concluded, sheep "recognize the face of a person familiar to them from a two-dimensional image".
The sheep made the correct choice of celebrity or handler roughly 70 percent of the time on average.
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