Crows are among the planet's most intelligent animals, teaching their young to use tools for foraging and banding together to fight off intruders. Now, the first study of how abstract reasoning works in these birds' brains could shed light on how intelligence works in a truly alien, non-mammal brain.
In comparing our mammal brain and the crow's bird brain, one notices that the brains are 180 degrees rotated from one another. This is shown with the PFC region of the human brain being in the frontal region and the NCL region of the crow being turned in toward the middle of the brain. Apparently these two areas are where complex "thinking" and "problem solving" takes place.
The alien aspect comes at this experiment showing that two dramatically different species might have similar abstract reasoning abilities. The crow brain may also help us in engineering new biological based computer systems. It appears that intelligence does not matter what kind of brain a creature has in its head.