Navigation Links
Chickadees can help humans get their bearings

How did University of Alberta researchers discover that animals zig when they were only supposed to zag? A little birdie told them.

In studying the spatial memory of wild-caught mountain chickadees, University of Alberta researchers were surprised to discover the birds contradicting prior research that showed how animals navigate. This study is the first to reveal a different pattern. Previously, only animals that had been raised in human-made enclosures had been tested.

The findings are published in the July issue of Biology Letters.

To get their bearings, humans and other animals are often guided by the geometrical shape of their environment. For example, humans have an easy time distinguishing the door located at the ends of a hallway from those located in the middle, but may confuse doors at the two ends, such as when they re-enter a hallway in a hotel. "This has been observed in every species tested, even when landmarks alone could be used, suggesting that animals are predisposed to go by geometry," said co-author Dr. Chris Sturdy, a professor of psychology and member of the Centre for Neuroscience at the University of Alberta.

The wild-caught chickadees differed from all previously tested animals by ignoring angular features of their environment and following landmarks instead. Although able to learn geometry when guiding themselves to food in lab experiments, the birds consistently ignored the concept when a prominent landmark, in this case a blue wall, was present.

"Getting oriented is an important part of solving many spatial navigational problems, such as locating your car in the parking lot at the end of a long day in the office. This discovery points to the fact that our early experiences influence how we solve such problems and could mean that by varying the environments that we encounter early in life, we could broaden and hone our spatial navigation abilities," said Dr. Sturdy and Dr. Marcia Spetch, who supervise
'"/>

Source:University of Alberta


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Yale researchers identify molecule for detecting parasitic infection in humans
2. Friendly bacteria in humans may protect against HIV
3. The lopsided brain: Attention bias is shared by humans and birds
4. Oldest cranial, dental and postcranial fossils of early modern European humans confirmed
5. Retrovirus struck ancestors of chimpanzees and gorillas millions of years ago, but did not affect ancestral humans
6. UI researcher studies deafness in fruit flies, humans
7. Study shows humans have ability to track odors, much like bloodhounds
8. Caloric restriction wont dramatically extend life span in humans: UCLA research
9. Study identifies gene in mice that may control risk-taking behavior in humans
10. Primate virus jumps species barrier to humans for first time in Asia
11. When in danger humans are similar to a deer in the headlights
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Chickadees can help humans get their bearings

(Date:8/29/2014)... the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston has gone ... can completely protect monkeys against a lethal dose of Ebola ... when the disease is severe. , Thomas Geisbert, professor of ... discussing advances in Ebola treatment research. The filoviruses known ... deadly of pathogens, with fatality rates of up to 90 ...
(Date:8/29/2014)... release is available in German . ... players in the natural nitrogen cycle on Earth and ... bacteria were thought to depend on nitrite as their ... by Holger Daims, a microbiologist at the University of ... hydrogen as an alternative source of energy. The oxidation ...
(Date:8/29/2014)... - In a cell,s nucleus, chromosomal DNA is ... an amalgam biologists call chromatin. Until about two ... "sidekick," the mere packing material around which the ... have developed a greater appreciation for how DNA/histone ... from multiple research institutions studying the sequence of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Leading Ebola researcher at UTMB says there's an effective treatment for Ebola 2Hydrogen powers important nitrogen-transforming bacteria 2Hydrogen powers important nitrogen-transforming bacteria 3'K-to-M' histone mutations: How repressing the repressors may drive tissue-specific cancers 2'K-to-M' histone mutations: How repressing the repressors may drive tissue-specific cancers 3
... vanilla smells like vanilla. But androstenone, a derivative of ... odor, can smell like either - depending on your ... androstenone, usually that of stale urine or strong sweat, ... cannot smell it at all. New research ...
... that plays a linchpin role in the ability of ... may lead to improved therapies for hormone-responsive breast cancers ... treatments. Estrogen causes hormone-responsive breast cancer cells to ... by cancer cells. Interfering with estrogen signaling is the ...
... sensor of voltage-gated ion channels is a conserved protein ... regulate ion permeation through the channel. A recently discovered ... not to an ion channel but to a phosphatidylinositide ... In a new paper published in The Journal ...
Cached Biology News:Gene determines whether male body odor smells pleasant 2Gene determines whether male body odor smells pleasant 3Linchpin gene may be useful target for new breast cancer therapies 2New insight into the mechanisms of voltage sensing and transduction in biological processes 2
(Date:8/29/2014)... NY (PRWEB) August 29, 2014 Local ... Hills Veterinary Hospital are seeking candidates to participate in ... with osteoarthritis. The ultimate goal of this study ... stem cells into one or two arthritically affected joints ... joints. , Candidates for the current investigational study ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... August 28, 2014 SPIE Fellow Glenn ... and Optical Science and Director of the Center for ... Carolina at Charlotte, and co-founder and Chairman of the ... as the 2015 Vice President of SPIE, the international ... Philip Stahl announced recent election results at the Annual ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... Spin-charge converters are important devices in spintronics, an ... charge of electrons but also on their spin ... transformation of electric into magnetic signals and vice ... Sinova from the Institute of Physics at Johannes ... the UK, Prague, and Japan, has for the ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... 28, 2014 Sterlitech is proud to ... to its stable of products . These ... cut-offs and include membrane filters with surface charges. ... customer demand for our membrane process testing equipment, and ... flat sheet membranes,” explains Sterlitech President Mark Spatz. ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Burnt Hills Veterinary Hospital Seeks Candidates for an Investigational Study of Stem Cells for Dogs with Arthritis 2Glenn Boreman, UNC Professor and Plasmonics Co-Founder, Elected to SPIE Presidential Chain 2A new, tunable device for spintronics 2A new, tunable device for spintronics 3Sterlitech Corporation Enhances Its Selection of Flat Sheet Membrane Filters 2
... an economic year in which some new investments were made, ... positioned itself to prosper in some emerging sectors. , ,With ... must remain warm and state policymakers need to turn a ... compete in the global marketplace. What's in store for the ...
... The Dow Jones Industrials had a fabulous year ... had a very solid year, by a large margin. The ... differently, mostly because the different composition of each. , ,The ... represents a greater spectrum of the biotech industry (larger and ...
... Wis. - The United States District Court for the ... damage verdict against Abbott Laboratories . , ,The Madison-based ... biopharmaceutical company based in Gent, Belgium, and rejected Abbott Labs' ... sued Abbott labs for infringing on a genotyping patent. Frank ...
Cached Biology Technology:Wisconsin's high-growth economy: '07 predictions 2Wisconsin's high-growth economy: '07 predictions 3Wisconsin's high-growth economy: '07 predictions 42006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 22006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 32006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 42006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 52006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 62006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 72006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 82006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 92006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 102006: A mixed blessing for Midwest life science companies 11
... Diessel fermentation systems for cultivation of microorganisms ... manufacturers of bio-pharmaceutical products maximum performance and ... microbial and cell fermentation 10 L ... areas ,*Fully automated control system ...
... Feature Extraction Software reads and ... to prepare microarray data for ... * one 1-year license ... NFP/Academic accounts ,one CD-ROM containing ...
... ELF 97 Cytological Labeling Kit provides a ... detection of cellular targets, including cell-surface receptors ... Labeling Kit contains the patented ELF 97 ... yellow-green precipitate at the site of enzymatic ...
... the various commercial and lab-prepared glass arrays. ... length and GC content of the attached ... employed all influence the optimal hybridization conditions ... the different variables to consider, it is ...
Biology Products: