Spatial accuracy in food-storing and nonstoring birds

A McGregor, Susan Denise Healy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We compared the ability of coal tits, Parus ater (a food-storing species), great tits, P. major, and blue tits, P. caeruleus (two nonstoring species) to remember spatial locations in a spatial delayed-matching-to-sample task. Presentation of a single sample image on a touch screen was followed by a choice phase containing two, three or four images, in which the bird had to choose the original image. Storers made more correct choices than did nonstorers. Performance was affected by the proximity of the distracters: both groups performed less well when distracters were close to the sample although storers were less affected by proximity of distracters than were nonstorers. Both groups made correct decisions sooner than errors. We conclude that the accuracy of spatial memory in food-storing birds is greater than that of nonstorers. (C) 1999 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)727-734
Number of pages8
JournalAnimal Behaviour
Volume58
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1999

Keywords

  • BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEES
  • MARSH TITS
  • MEMORY
  • LOCATION
  • CUES
  • PIGEONS
  • LANDMARKS
  • COLOR
  • NUTCRACKERS
  • CACHES

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