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Social Eavesdropping in Zebrafish: Tuning of Attention to Social Interactions.

Abril-de-Abreu R, Cruz J, Oliveira RF - Sci Rep (2015)

Bottom Line: This ability (aka social eavesdropping) is expected to impact Darwinian fitness, and hence predicts the evolution of cognitive processes that enable social animals to use public information available in the environment.These adaptive specializations in cognition may have evolved both at the level of learning and memory mechanisms, and at the level of input mechanisms, such as attention, which select the information that is available for learning.Here we used zebrafish to test if attention in a social species is tuned to the exchange of information between conspecifics.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: 1] Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Rua da Quinta Grande 6, 2780-156, Oeiras, Portugal [2] ISPA - Instituto Universitário, Rua Jardim do Tabaco 34, 1149-041 Lisboa, Portugal [3] Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme, Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Av. de Brasilia, 1400-038 Lisboa, Portugal.

ABSTRACT
Group living animals may eavesdrop on signalling interactions between conspecifics in order to collect adaptively relevant information obtained from others, without incurring in the costs of first-hand information acquisition. This ability (aka social eavesdropping) is expected to impact Darwinian fitness, and hence predicts the evolution of cognitive processes that enable social animals to use public information available in the environment. These adaptive specializations in cognition may have evolved both at the level of learning and memory mechanisms, and at the level of input mechanisms, such as attention, which select the information that is available for learning. Here we used zebrafish to test if attention in a social species is tuned to the exchange of information between conspecifics. Our results show that zebrafish are more attentive towards interacting (i.e. fighting) than towards non-interacting pairs of conspecifics, with the exposure to fighting not increasing activity or stress levels. Moreover, using video playbacks to manipulate form features of the fighting fish, we show that during the assessment phase of the fight, bystanders' attention is more driven by form features of the interacting opponents; whereas during the post-resolution phase, it is driven by biological movement features of the dominant fish chasing the subordinate fish.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Bystanders’ temporal dynamics of proximity and directional focus towards fighting conspecifics.(a) Comparison between the bystanders to fighting conspecifics’ (BIC) mean time in the ROI and the socially isolated (ISOL) reference fish, measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. (b) Comparison between the BIC and ISOL fishes’ mean directional focus onto the stimulus direction (Rgproj), measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. For both (a) and (b), the coloured thick lines (BIC- magenta; ISOL- blue) represent the mean values for each treatment. Grey shadows represent the standard error (SEM). The dashed grey line represents in (a) the value expected from a random distribution in the arena (25%); in (b) no directionality (Rgproj = 0). (c) Scatter plot of the BIC fishes’ mean time spent in the ROI as function of Rgproj. Open magenta circles represent the sampled (in 30 seconds bins) means. The Spearman correlation coefficient rs is shown in red. Dashed line indicates the regression line for easier visualization of trend.
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f3: Bystanders’ temporal dynamics of proximity and directional focus towards fighting conspecifics.(a) Comparison between the bystanders to fighting conspecifics’ (BIC) mean time in the ROI and the socially isolated (ISOL) reference fish, measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. (b) Comparison between the BIC and ISOL fishes’ mean directional focus onto the stimulus direction (Rgproj), measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. For both (a) and (b), the coloured thick lines (BIC- magenta; ISOL- blue) represent the mean values for each treatment. Grey shadows represent the standard error (SEM). The dashed grey line represents in (a) the value expected from a random distribution in the arena (25%); in (b) no directionality (Rgproj = 0). (c) Scatter plot of the BIC fishes’ mean time spent in the ROI as function of Rgproj. Open magenta circles represent the sampled (in 30 seconds bins) means. The Spearman correlation coefficient rs is shown in red. Dashed line indicates the regression line for easier visualization of trend.

Mentions: Finally, we compared the temporal dynamics of the BIC fishes’ mean time in ROI and Rgproj, with the ISOL reference group. We observed that both mean values were sustained throughout the 30 minutes test (Fig. 3a,b) and that the two parameters strongly correlated with each other (Spearman correlation: rs = 0.70, P < 0.001; Fig. 3c).


Social Eavesdropping in Zebrafish: Tuning of Attention to Social Interactions.

Abril-de-Abreu R, Cruz J, Oliveira RF - Sci Rep (2015)

Bystanders’ temporal dynamics of proximity and directional focus towards fighting conspecifics.(a) Comparison between the bystanders to fighting conspecifics’ (BIC) mean time in the ROI and the socially isolated (ISOL) reference fish, measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. (b) Comparison between the BIC and ISOL fishes’ mean directional focus onto the stimulus direction (Rgproj), measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. For both (a) and (b), the coloured thick lines (BIC- magenta; ISOL- blue) represent the mean values for each treatment. Grey shadows represent the standard error (SEM). The dashed grey line represents in (a) the value expected from a random distribution in the arena (25%); in (b) no directionality (Rgproj = 0). (c) Scatter plot of the BIC fishes’ mean time spent in the ROI as function of Rgproj. Open magenta circles represent the sampled (in 30 seconds bins) means. The Spearman correlation coefficient rs is shown in red. Dashed line indicates the regression line for easier visualization of trend.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4525141&req=5

f3: Bystanders’ temporal dynamics of proximity and directional focus towards fighting conspecifics.(a) Comparison between the bystanders to fighting conspecifics’ (BIC) mean time in the ROI and the socially isolated (ISOL) reference fish, measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. (b) Comparison between the BIC and ISOL fishes’ mean directional focus onto the stimulus direction (Rgproj), measured in 30 seconds bins, throughout the 30 minutes test. For both (a) and (b), the coloured thick lines (BIC- magenta; ISOL- blue) represent the mean values for each treatment. Grey shadows represent the standard error (SEM). The dashed grey line represents in (a) the value expected from a random distribution in the arena (25%); in (b) no directionality (Rgproj = 0). (c) Scatter plot of the BIC fishes’ mean time spent in the ROI as function of Rgproj. Open magenta circles represent the sampled (in 30 seconds bins) means. The Spearman correlation coefficient rs is shown in red. Dashed line indicates the regression line for easier visualization of trend.
Mentions: Finally, we compared the temporal dynamics of the BIC fishes’ mean time in ROI and Rgproj, with the ISOL reference group. We observed that both mean values were sustained throughout the 30 minutes test (Fig. 3a,b) and that the two parameters strongly correlated with each other (Spearman correlation: rs = 0.70, P < 0.001; Fig. 3c).

Bottom Line: This ability (aka social eavesdropping) is expected to impact Darwinian fitness, and hence predicts the evolution of cognitive processes that enable social animals to use public information available in the environment.These adaptive specializations in cognition may have evolved both at the level of learning and memory mechanisms, and at the level of input mechanisms, such as attention, which select the information that is available for learning.Here we used zebrafish to test if attention in a social species is tuned to the exchange of information between conspecifics.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: 1] Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Rua da Quinta Grande 6, 2780-156, Oeiras, Portugal [2] ISPA - Instituto Universitário, Rua Jardim do Tabaco 34, 1149-041 Lisboa, Portugal [3] Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme, Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Av. de Brasilia, 1400-038 Lisboa, Portugal.

ABSTRACT
Group living animals may eavesdrop on signalling interactions between conspecifics in order to collect adaptively relevant information obtained from others, without incurring in the costs of first-hand information acquisition. This ability (aka social eavesdropping) is expected to impact Darwinian fitness, and hence predicts the evolution of cognitive processes that enable social animals to use public information available in the environment. These adaptive specializations in cognition may have evolved both at the level of learning and memory mechanisms, and at the level of input mechanisms, such as attention, which select the information that is available for learning. Here we used zebrafish to test if attention in a social species is tuned to the exchange of information between conspecifics. Our results show that zebrafish are more attentive towards interacting (i.e. fighting) than towards non-interacting pairs of conspecifics, with the exposure to fighting not increasing activity or stress levels. Moreover, using video playbacks to manipulate form features of the fighting fish, we show that during the assessment phase of the fight, bystanders' attention is more driven by form features of the interacting opponents; whereas during the post-resolution phase, it is driven by biological movement features of the dominant fish chasing the subordinate fish.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus