By attaching ultralight video cameras to the tail feathers of crows, scientists have discovered that they use a variety of tools to gather food in the wild.
The crows were seen using twigs to “fish” for beetle larvae in dead wood or to turn over loose material on the ground to find insects.
They didn’t choose any random twig, however. The cameras showed them carefully choosing the twig they wanted, breaking it off and sometimes smoothing it or bending it into a hook. They kept especially good tools for future use.
The cameras, which weigh about the same as a dozen paperclips, are attached to the tail feathers of the crows and peek through the bird’s legs at whatever is in front of the bird. The cameras only work for about an hour before losing power.