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Magnetic body alignment in migratory songbirds : a computer vision approach

Bianco, Giuseppe LU ; Köhler, Robin Clemens ; Ilieva, Mihaela LU and Åkesson, Susanne LU (2019) In The Journal of experimental biology 222.
Abstract

Several invertebrate and vertebrate species have been shown to align their body relative to the geomagnetic field. Many hypotheses have been proposed to explain the adaptive significance of magnetic body alignment outside the context of navigation. However, experimental evidence to investigate alternative hypotheses is still limited. We present a new setup to track the preferential body alignment relative to the geomagnetic field in captive animals using computer vision. We tested our method on three species of migratory songbirds and provide evidence that they align their body with the geomagnetic field. We suggest that this behaviour is involved in the underlying mechanism for compass orientation and calibration, which may occur near... (More)

Several invertebrate and vertebrate species have been shown to align their body relative to the geomagnetic field. Many hypotheses have been proposed to explain the adaptive significance of magnetic body alignment outside the context of navigation. However, experimental evidence to investigate alternative hypotheses is still limited. We present a new setup to track the preferential body alignment relative to the geomagnetic field in captive animals using computer vision. We tested our method on three species of migratory songbirds and provide evidence that they align their body with the geomagnetic field. We suggest that this behaviour is involved in the underlying mechanism for compass orientation and calibration, which may occur near to sunrise and sunset periods. Our method could easily be extended to other species and used to test a large set of hypotheses to explain the mechanisms behind the magnetic body alignment and the magnetic sense in general.

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Behavioural experiments, Geomagnetic field, Magnetic compass, Magnetic sense, Movement patterns
in
The Journal of experimental biology
volume
222
publisher
The Company of Biologists Ltd
external identifiers
  • scopus:85062838225
  • pmid:30728159
ISSN
1477-9145
DOI
10.1242/jeb.196469
project
Centre for Animal Movement Research
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
aceba960-2b85-4295-9467-33b1493dc892
date added to LUP
2019-03-21 12:19:10
date last changed
2019-09-26 14:47:29
@article{aceba960-2b85-4295-9467-33b1493dc892,
  abstract     = {<p>Several invertebrate and vertebrate species have been shown to align their body relative to the geomagnetic field. Many hypotheses have been proposed to explain the adaptive significance of magnetic body alignment outside the context of navigation. However, experimental evidence to investigate alternative hypotheses is still limited. We present a new setup to track the preferential body alignment relative to the geomagnetic field in captive animals using computer vision. We tested our method on three species of migratory songbirds and provide evidence that they align their body with the geomagnetic field. We suggest that this behaviour is involved in the underlying mechanism for compass orientation and calibration, which may occur near to sunrise and sunset periods. Our method could easily be extended to other species and used to test a large set of hypotheses to explain the mechanisms behind the magnetic body alignment and the magnetic sense in general.</p>},
  author       = {Bianco, Giuseppe and Köhler, Robin Clemens and Ilieva, Mihaela and Åkesson, Susanne},
  issn         = {1477-9145},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {03},
  publisher    = {The Company of Biologists Ltd},
  series       = {The Journal of experimental biology},
  title        = {Magnetic body alignment in migratory songbirds : a computer vision approach},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1242/jeb.196469},
  doi          = {10.1242/jeb.196469},
  volume       = {222},
  year         = {2019},
}