Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24: 127-128

“Magical number 5” in a chimpanzee

Nobuyuki Kawai, Tetsuro Matsuzawa

Abstract

One of our recent studies has revealed that a numerically trained chimpanzee can memorize a correct sequence of five numbers shown on a monitor. Comparative investigations with humans show very similar patterns of errors in the two species, suggesting humans and chimpanzee share homologous memory processes. Whether or not 5 is a pure capacity limit for the chimpanzee remains an empirical question.

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Kawai N, Matsuzawa T (2001) “Magical number 5” in a chimpanzee Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24: 127-128