How ecology shapes prey fish cognition

S. Beri, B. W. Patton, Victoria Ann Braithwaite-Read

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Fish exhibit diverse cognitive capacities: they cooperate, punish, develop cultural traditions, learn to map their environment and communicate their intentions to one another. Skills such as these have helped fish radiate to colonize the many and diverse aquatic niches available. Prey fish are no exception to this, and several recent studies have shown them to be a rich resource for understanding the evolutionary ecology of animal cognition. Many fish have to cope with the threat of predation, but some environments contain more predators than others. These environments deliver the opportunity to investigate how predation pressure shapes fish cognition and behaviour. Here we compared fish from two high and two low predation habitats in their ability to learn a sequential choice spatial task. We also investigated their ability to solve the maze after it was rearranged. Fish from high predation sites made more errors as they learned to navigate the maze than fish from low predation sites. The fish also varied in the cues that they learned to help them solve the task. These did not vary by levels of predation pressure, rather, they differed between rivers, with fish from one river learning to use landmark cues, and those from the other river learning the sequence of left and right turns. As the different populations varied in how well they learned to navigate through a reconfigured maze, it seems likely that predation pressure is not the only factor influencing spatial behavior in these fish.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)190-194
Number of pages5
JournalBehavioural Processes
Volume109
Issue numberPB
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014

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Ecology
cognition
Cognition
Fishes
ecology
fish
predation
Rivers
Aptitude
rivers
Pressure
Cues
learning
Spatial Behavior
Learning
fish behavior
Ecosystem
niches
predators
habitats

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

Cite this

Beri, S., Patton, B. W., & Braithwaite-Read, V. A. (2014). How ecology shapes prey fish cognition. Behavioural Processes, 109(PB), 190-194. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beproc.2014.09.020
Beri, S. ; Patton, B. W. ; Braithwaite-Read, Victoria Ann. / How ecology shapes prey fish cognition. In: Behavioural Processes. 2014 ; Vol. 109, No. PB. pp. 190-194.
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Beri, S, Patton, BW & Braithwaite-Read, VA 2014, 'How ecology shapes prey fish cognition', Behavioural Processes, vol. 109, no. PB, pp. 190-194. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beproc.2014.09.020

How ecology shapes prey fish cognition. / Beri, S.; Patton, B. W.; Braithwaite-Read, Victoria Ann.

In: Behavioural Processes, Vol. 109, No. PB, 01.11.2014, p. 190-194.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Beri S, Patton BW, Braithwaite-Read VA. How ecology shapes prey fish cognition. Behavioural Processes. 2014 Nov 1;109(PB):190-194. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beproc.2014.09.020