Nest building, the forgotten behaviour
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In the last decade tool manufacture in birds has transformed the landscape of animal cognition. As tool manufacture, however, is rare and practised by species that are not commonplace it is not a particularly useful model for investigating the evolution of physical cognition. On the basis of recent evidence, we argue that nest building, which bears considerable phenotypic resemblance to tool making, is more useful for examining not only the role that cognition may play in construction behaviours, but also the neural underpinning of those behaviours and, ultimately their evolution. We substantiate our view with recent evidence that building by birds involves changes in dexterity, is experience-dependent and involves activity in, at least, motor, reward and social network brain regions as well as in the cerebellum.
Guillette , L M & Healy , S D 2015 , ' Nest building, the forgotten behaviour ' Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences , vol 6 , pp. 90-96 . DOI: 10.1016/j.cobeha.2015.10.009
Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences
Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. This work is made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created, accepted version manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cobeha.2015.10.009
We thank the BBSRC (BB/I019502/1, SDH; Anniversary Future Leader Fellowship 163 BB/M013944/1, LMG) for funding.
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