Over the weekend I presented my workshop,’ Taming Office Hecklers- Dealing with Difficult Personalities’ at the District 60 Toastmaster’s Spring Conference here in Toronto. Thanks to all the volunteers and folks who attended.
I perhaps was heckled (  I know, at a conference!) with the most bizarre line.
“You’re wrong, Judy! The octopus is smarter than the chimpanzee.”
Ironically, I was talking about the Office ‘ Expert’ – The Cliff Claven Water Cooler Windbag. So I did, what I would do with a Cliff Claven. I smiled nicely and said that I would be happy to review any documents supporting that fact. I’m still waiting 🙂
Of course, this was all in good fun but I still couldn’t get the comment out of my head. So I did some research.
Here you have it….The Top Ten Smartest Animals

10. The Jumping Spider – Yikes..it jumps AND it’s smart! Remind me to scrap those countries off of my vacationing spots ( Africa, Asia and Australia). Apparently, the spider plucks the rhythm of a distressed insect on its web. When the predator comes over to check it out.. BAM …snack time.
9.Rats- aaaah –disgusting  Sure we know rats have been used in tons of experiments but did you know that they now use rats to detect land mines, bombs and tuberulosis in patients ?
8.Ravens and Crows ( Ravens are similar to crows but larger. An octopus told me that.) Both of been known to create knives out of leaves and stalks of grass. They can drop nuts on the highway, wait for a car to run it over and then swoop down and eat the nut.
( Unless, it’s a Smart car that of course, stalled on the nut.)
7. The Border Collie – These dogs need a job.
6. The Octopus-Remember Paul the Octopus who predicted the outcome of World Cup matches? They have a huge brain but a lot of their brain power goes into just working their arms ( kind of like bodybuilders- ha JUST kidding.)
5.African Grey Parrot – They can mimic other animals, voices and household noises.
There’s a great story of an African Grey who was lost in Japan. He became injured and was dropped off at a vet. The African Grey was able to say, “ My name is Mr. Yosuke Nakamura” The bird also gave his full address and telephone number. He was promptly returned to his owner after entertaining the staff.
4. Elephants – Elephants can see themselves in a mirror and know that it’s a reflection- not another elephant. This is apparently used as a base test for empathy, altruism and The Housewives of Orange County.
3. Rhesus Macaque Monkey These guys have been known to display suicidal tendencies and planned attacks.( they must have seen a Charlie Sheen concert)
2. Bottlenose Dolphin. Love these dudes.
And finally…TA DA
1. The Chimpanzee Chimps apparently been able to beat college students in exams (insert Southern College here)
And now for your viewing pleasure- Check out this smartie pants.