Can Animals Think?

After years of debate, ingenious new studies of dolphins, apes and other brainy beasts are convincing many scientists that the answer is yes

In a sun-dappled pool not far from the clamor of Waikiki Beach, two female dolphins poke their heads out of the water, waiting for a command. "O.K.," says Louis Herman, founder and director of the Kewalo Basin Marine Mammal Laboratory, "now let's try a tandem creative." Two graduate students, positioned at opposite ends of the 50-ft. tank, throw full body and soul into communicating this message to the animals, Phoenix and Akeakamai. First the humans ask the dolphins to pay attention by holding a finger high in the air. Then they tap the index fingers of each hand together, forming the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!