Innovative behaviour in fish: Atlantic cod can learn to use an external tag to manipulate a self-feeder

Type Article
Date 2014-05
Language English
Author(s) Millot Sandie1, Nilsson Jonatan2, Fosseidengen Jan Erik2, Begout Marie-LaureORCID1, Ferno Anders3, Braithwaite Victoria A.4, Kristiansen Tore S.2
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, F-17137 Lhoumeau, France.
2 : Inst Marine Res, N-5817 Bergen, Norway.
3 : Univ Bergen, Dept Biol, N-5020 Bergen, Norway.
4 : Penn State Univ, Dept Ecosyst Sci & Management, University Pk, PA 16802 USA.
Source Animal Cognition (1435-9448) (Springer Heidelberg), 2014-05 , Vol. 17 , N. 3 , P. 779-785
DOI 10.1007/s10071-013-0710-3
WOS© Times Cited 15
Keyword(s) Innovation, Learning, Cognitive ability, Tool use, Atlantic cod, Food acquisition
Abstract This study describes how three individual fish, Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua L.), developed a novel behaviour and learnt to use a dorsally attached external tag to activate a self-feeder. This behaviour was repeated up to several hundred times, and over time these fish fine-tuned the behaviour and made a series of goal-directed coordinated movements needed to attach the feeder’s pull string to the tag and stretch the string until the feeder was activated. These observations demonstrate a capacity in cod to develop a novel behaviour utilizing an attached tag as a tool to achieve a goal. This may be seen as one of the very few observed examples of innovation and tool use in fish.
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Millot Sandie, Nilsson Jonatan, Fosseidengen Jan Erik, Begout Marie-Laure, Ferno Anders, Braithwaite Victoria A., Kristiansen Tore S. (2014). Innovative behaviour in fish: Atlantic cod can learn to use an external tag to manipulate a self-feeder. Animal Cognition, 17(3), 779-785. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :