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Old 03-24-2016, 01:33 AM
Jophiel Jophiel is online now
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Chicago suburbia
Posts: 17,276
Originally Posted by Francis Vaughan View Post
Animals seem to develop a fear of heights at a very specific developmental stage. Experiments with glass floors over a pit with kittens and babies seem to indicate that you can point to an age when the infant critter will cheerfully crawl/walk over the glass, and a later age when they will refuse to budge. Suggests that the innate fear of falling/heights is wired in and gets turned on at defined point in brain development.
I had a Time Life book on animal behavior once upon a time with an image of a kitten hesitant to cross such a "barrier". Apparently this experiment is called a "visual cliff" and has been tested on not just humans, kittens and rats but also cows and turtles. In case you ever wondered if turtles understand gravity.