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Visual navigation in desert ants Cataglyphis fortis: are snapshots coupled to a celestial system of reference?

Åkesson, Susanne LU and Wehner, Rüdiger (2002) In Journal of Experimental Biology 205(14). p.1971-1978
Abstract
Central-place foraging insects such as desert ants of the genus Cataglyphis use both path integration and landmarks to navigate during foraging excursions. The use of landmark information and a celestial system of reference for nest location was investigated by training desert ants returning from an artificial feeder to find the nest at one of four alternative positions located asymmetrically inside a four-cylinder landmark array. The cylindrical landmarks were all of the same size and arranged in a square, with the nest located in the southeast corner. When released from the compass direction experienced during training (southeast), the ants searched most intensely at the fictive nest position. When instead released from any of the three... (More)
Central-place foraging insects such as desert ants of the genus Cataglyphis use both path integration and landmarks to navigate during foraging excursions. The use of landmark information and a celestial system of reference for nest location was investigated by training desert ants returning from an artificial feeder to find the nest at one of four alternative positions located asymmetrically inside a four-cylinder landmark array. The cylindrical landmarks were all of the same size and arranged in a square, with the nest located in the southeast corner. When released from the compass direction experienced during training (southeast), the ants searched most intensely at the fictive nest position. When instead released from any of the three alternative directions of approach (southwest, northwest or northeast), the same individuals instead searched at two of the four alternative positions by initiating their search at the position closest to the direction of approach when entering the landmark square and then returning to the position at which snapshot, current landmark image and celestial reference information were in register. The results show that, in the ants visual snapshot memory, a memorized landmark scene can temporarily be decoupled from a memorized celestial system of reference. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Journal of Experimental Biology
volume
205
issue
14
pages
1971 - 1978
publisher
The Company of Biologists Ltd
external identifiers
  • wos:000177259600001
  • scopus:0036023231
ISSN
1477-9145
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
c1bf566d-256b-4a0a-8ff4-1c14e11cfcb9 (old id 131275)
alternative location
http://jeb.biologists.org/cgi/content/abstract/205/14/1971
date added to LUP
2007-06-25 11:23:41
date last changed
2017-03-05 03:39:30
@article{c1bf566d-256b-4a0a-8ff4-1c14e11cfcb9,
  abstract     = {Central-place foraging insects such as desert ants of the genus Cataglyphis use both path integration and landmarks to navigate during foraging excursions. The use of landmark information and a celestial system of reference for nest location was investigated by training desert ants returning from an artificial feeder to find the nest at one of four alternative positions located asymmetrically inside a four-cylinder landmark array. The cylindrical landmarks were all of the same size and arranged in a square, with the nest located in the southeast corner. When released from the compass direction experienced during training (southeast), the ants searched most intensely at the fictive nest position. When instead released from any of the three alternative directions of approach (southwest, northwest or northeast), the same individuals instead searched at two of the four alternative positions by initiating their search at the position closest to the direction of approach when entering the landmark square and then returning to the position at which snapshot, current landmark image and celestial reference information were in register. The results show that, in the ants visual snapshot memory, a memorized landmark scene can temporarily be decoupled from a memorized celestial system of reference.},
  author       = {Åkesson, Susanne and Wehner, Rüdiger},
  issn         = {1477-9145},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {14},
  pages        = {1971--1978},
  publisher    = {The Company of Biologists Ltd},
  series       = {Journal of Experimental Biology},
  title        = {Visual navigation in desert ants Cataglyphis fortis: are snapshots coupled to a celestial system of reference?},
  volume       = {205},
  year         = {2002},
}