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When can embryos learn? A test of the timing of learning in embryonic amphibians.

Sehr EK, Beasley LN, Wilson KW, Gall BG - Ecol Evol (2016)

Bottom Line: There was no significant difference in number of movements or time spent moving among any of the treatments.There was no difference in survival or refuge preference between individuals; however, all individuals preferred vegetated over open areas regardless of treatment type.We discuss hypotheses for the absence of embryonic learning in this species and suggest it may be the result of the intensity of the predator-prey interaction between the predator, large marbled salamander larvae, and the prey, spotted salamander larvae.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Biology Hanover College Hanover Indiana 47243.

ABSTRACT
Learning is crucial to the survival of organisms across their life span, including during embryonic development. We set out to determine when learning becomes possible in amphibian development by exposing spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) embryos to chemical stimuli from a predator (Ambystoma opacum), nonpredator (Lithobates clamitans), or control at developmental stages 16-21 or 36-38 (Harrison 1969). Once exposures were completed and embryos hatched, we recorded the number of movements and time spent moving of individuals in both groups and all treatments. There was no significant difference in number of movements or time spent moving among any of the treatments. The groups that were exposed to predator stimuli and a blank control at stages 36-38 were also tested to determine whether there was a difference in refuge preference or difference in survivorship when exposed to a predator (marbled salamander). There was no difference in survival or refuge preference between individuals; however, all individuals preferred vegetated over open areas regardless of treatment type. We discuss hypotheses for the absence of embryonic learning in this species and suggest it may be the result of the intensity of the predator-prey interaction between the predator, large marbled salamander larvae, and the prey, spotted salamander larvae.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Proportion of spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) larvae (in blank and predator treatments) surviving a predatory encounter with a marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum) larvae. There was no significant difference between the two treatments (df = 11, t = 0.042, P = 0.968).
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ece32018-fig-0002: Proportion of spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) larvae (in blank and predator treatments) surviving a predatory encounter with a marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum) larvae. There was no significant difference between the two treatments (df = 11, t = 0.042, P = 0.968).

Mentions: There was no significant difference in the survival of spotted salamander larvae between those exposed as embryos to a blank control and those exposed to cues from a predator during encounters with predatory marbled salamander larvae (df = 11, t = 0.042, P = 0.968, Fig. 2).


When can embryos learn? A test of the timing of learning in embryonic amphibians.

Sehr EK, Beasley LN, Wilson KW, Gall BG - Ecol Evol (2016)

Proportion of spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) larvae (in blank and predator treatments) surviving a predatory encounter with a marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum) larvae. There was no significant difference between the two treatments (df = 11, t = 0.042, P = 0.968).
© Copyright Policy - creativeCommonsBy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4834331&req=5

ece32018-fig-0002: Proportion of spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) larvae (in blank and predator treatments) surviving a predatory encounter with a marbled salamander (Ambystoma opacum) larvae. There was no significant difference between the two treatments (df = 11, t = 0.042, P = 0.968).
Mentions: There was no significant difference in the survival of spotted salamander larvae between those exposed as embryos to a blank control and those exposed to cues from a predator during encounters with predatory marbled salamander larvae (df = 11, t = 0.042, P = 0.968, Fig. 2).

Bottom Line: There was no significant difference in number of movements or time spent moving among any of the treatments.There was no difference in survival or refuge preference between individuals; however, all individuals preferred vegetated over open areas regardless of treatment type.We discuss hypotheses for the absence of embryonic learning in this species and suggest it may be the result of the intensity of the predator-prey interaction between the predator, large marbled salamander larvae, and the prey, spotted salamander larvae.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Biology Hanover College Hanover Indiana 47243.

ABSTRACT
Learning is crucial to the survival of organisms across their life span, including during embryonic development. We set out to determine when learning becomes possible in amphibian development by exposing spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) embryos to chemical stimuli from a predator (Ambystoma opacum), nonpredator (Lithobates clamitans), or control at developmental stages 16-21 or 36-38 (Harrison 1969). Once exposures were completed and embryos hatched, we recorded the number of movements and time spent moving of individuals in both groups and all treatments. There was no significant difference in number of movements or time spent moving among any of the treatments. The groups that were exposed to predator stimuli and a blank control at stages 36-38 were also tested to determine whether there was a difference in refuge preference or difference in survivorship when exposed to a predator (marbled salamander). There was no difference in survival or refuge preference between individuals; however, all individuals preferred vegetated over open areas regardless of treatment type. We discuss hypotheses for the absence of embryonic learning in this species and suggest it may be the result of the intensity of the predator-prey interaction between the predator, large marbled salamander larvae, and the prey, spotted salamander larvae.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus