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dc.contributor.authorBrown, Theo
dc.contributor.authorHurly, T. Andrew
dc.contributor.authorHealy, Susan D.
dc.contributor.authorTello-Ramos, Maria C.
dc.identifier.citationBrown , T , Hurly , T A , Healy , S D & Tello-Ramos , M C 2022 , ' Size is relative : use of relational concepts by wild hummingbirds ' , Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences , vol. 289 , no. 1971 , 20212508 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 278792667
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: 7309f48b-6b85-47df-a4a4-4ae4a8c6cde4
dc.identifier.otherJisc: 192122
dc.identifier.otherpublisher-id: rspb20212508
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 85126842975
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0002-8059-4480/work/111210067
dc.identifier.otherWOS: 000784192600012
dc.descriptionThis work was supported by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (S.D.H.), the University of Lethbridge and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (RGPIN 121496–2003; T.A.H.).en
dc.description.abstractRufous hummingbirds (Selasphorus rufus) will readily learn the location and the colour of rewarded flowers within their territory. But if these birds could apply a relational concept such as ‘the larger flowers have more nectar’, they could forego learning the locations of hundreds of individual flowers. Here, we investigated whether wild male territorial rufous hummingbirds might use ‘larger than’ and ‘smaller than’ relational rules and apply them to flowers of different sizes. Subjects were trained to feed consistently from one of two flowers. Although the flowers differed only in size, the reward was always contained in the same-size flower. The birds were then tested on a choice of two empty flowers: one of the familiar size and the other a novel size. Hummingbirds applied relational rules by choosing the flower that was of the correct relational size rather than visiting the flower of the size rewarded during training. The choices made by the hummingbirds were not consistent with alternative mechanisms such as peak shift or associative learning. We suggest that while hummingbirds are very good at remembering the spatial locations of rewarding flowers, they would be able to use relative rules when foraging in new and changing environments.
dc.relation.ispartofProceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciencesen
dc.rightsCopyright © 2022 The Authors. Published by the Royal Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, provided the originalauthor and source are credited.en
dc.subjectResearch articlesen
dc.subjectRelational conceptsen
dc.subjectSelasphorus rufusen
dc.subjectQH301 Biologyen
dc.titleSize is relative : use of relational concepts by wild hummingbirdsen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.description.versionPublisher PDFen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. School of Biologyen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Centre for Biological Diversityen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Institute of Behavioural and Neural Sciencesen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Centre for Social Learning & Cognitive Evolutionen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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