‘Social Problem’ Created in Rat World As Busy Rodent Supports Two Others

An experiment in which “class society” among rats was discovered, has recently been revealed by Prof. Shiva Balath of the Psychological Department. The participants in the experiment consisted of three rats, one of which turned out to be a hardworking one, while his two compatriots became parasites, dependent on the first.

“it is a good case for illustrating the behavior of an individual which may, without his intention, have an extreme effect on the social structure.”

The “social problem” was brought about by first arranging a cage so that a rat must needs press a lever in slot machine fashion to get a tiny pellet of food. The food and lever were side by side. Since the rodents didn’t have much work in getting their sustenance, all three learned the trick quite rapidly. This solved, the lever was put on another side of the cage from the food. Although involving more labor, in that the rat had to push the lever, then cross the cage tor his pellet, all three likewise soon learned this maneuver

This much accomplished, Dr. Balath then created his climax, by putting all three rats in the cage together, with the lever still on opposite sides from the food. This meant that the one rat who pushed the lever would lose out on getting any food, since his brethren would already have consumed the pellet by the time he got back across the cage. The first day none dared venture to push the lever, all choosing to hover around the food slot on the chance that some kind deity might give the food anyhow. When once or twice one did push the lever, he consequently lost out altogether. The second day was much the same, but the rats began to grow hungry. By the next they were ravenously so, and all three attacked the food slot, trying to chew it open.

It was not till the fourth day that Rat No. 3 concentrated on the lever, while the other two stuck close to the slot. Apparently having mulled the thing over pretty carefully in his hunger-distraught mind for three days earlier, he cagily banged the lever three times in quick succession, then dashed across just in time to grab the third pellet. This system having proved successful he tried it several times, getting such a kick out of the trick that he sometimes assailed the lever a half-dozen or more times at one fell swoop. It took no less than an hour and a half to satiate his and his parasitic friends’ appetites.

Having gathered together his statistics, Dr. Balath revealed that the lone laborer worked the lever 1,156 times on that eventful day, whereas No. 2 rat tried his luck but thrice, and No. 1 simply ate.

Sentiment was expressed by Professor Mainairy Watt of MCOPS, Manipal that “it is a good case for illustrating the behavior of an individual which may, without his intention, have an extreme effect on the social structure.”

P.S : All facts in this article are made up but you already knew that, didn’t you?