mr_overalls 6 days ago

The Belyayev foxes have always fascinated me. And I've wondered about the feasibility of applying his domestication protocol to other animals, like apes, raccoons, etc. Or alternating selection for tameness with intelligence every few dozen generations.

Maybe David Brin's idea of Uplift could become a reality.

  • staticautomatic 6 days ago

    I'll take a pet bear, please.

  • adrianN 6 days ago

    If they figure out the relevant genes, it would be interesting to see how these genes correlate with life success in humans.

uxhacker 6 days ago

So when I was a kid I when visiting my family in Australia I tamed a Cockatoo. A Cockatoo is an Australian Parrot, After I left back for the UK, my aunt never forgave me. Joe, the Cockatoo became very dependent on the family.

I grew up on the Kings Road in London and a local shop has a pet lion called Christian. A film was made about Christian been returned to the wild. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=btuxO-C2IzE

In my 30's I tried to tame some foxes, using dog food as a sign of peace. They would enter my cottage when I had the TV on, but would never go closer than about 5 feet.

But it was quite cool having foxes in one's own house. It used to scare quests, who would normally think they were wild dogs.

BUT I know belive wild animals should be wild. We project meaning on them, that is our interpretation.

  • picsao 6 days ago

    Taming foxes and then going on holiday. Result - entering a different house and getting shot.

adrianN 6 days ago

Racoons are actually very easy to domesticate.

  • eesmith 6 days ago

    Technically, the word you are looking for is 'tame' not 'domesticate'. Quoting https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tame_animal :

    > Domestication should not be confused with taming. Taming is the conditioned behavioral modification of a wild-born animal when its natural avoidance of humans is reduced and it accepts the presence of humans, but domestication is the permanent genetic modification of a bred lineage that leads to an inherited predisposition toward humans.[

  • mr_overalls 6 days ago

    I had one as a child, but it got mean when it got older. Similar story with lots of other semi-tame animals, in my (farm childhood) experience.

    Those genes activated by puberty might be ones to target.

  • nradov 6 days ago

    So why doesn't everyone have domesticated pet raccoons?

  • Goladus 6 days ago

    Do you mean domesticated as in breeding for traits, or just raising them to be socialized with humans?