A field experiment using decoy models and sound playbacks.
Bruce Smith gets hands-on with his lab students in this course.
In the betta (fighting fish) lab we studied aggressive behavior and threat signaling. First, we try to determine the importance of color, shape, size and motion as releasing stimuli using paper cut-outs of fish images to represent rivals. In a future lab some groups test whether they learn to recognize neighbors and ignore them compred to novel fish (Dear Enemy Hypothesis)
Knifefish use weak electrical current for navigation and communication. In this lab we are analysing their electrical signals and some groups are recording the signal and playing back their own signal versus that of another individual to compare their response.
Every May I travel to Algonquin Park to visit the Wildlife Research Station and collect water mites and mosquitoes for my summer research. We always see moose and often find ourselves there at the peak of blackfly season (hence the bug jackets!)