Tests for cognitive mapping in Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga columbiana).

Academic Article


  • In these experiments, the authors examined the nature of the spatial information that Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga columbiana) use during navigation and whether this information is represented in the form of a cognitive map. In Experiment 1, nutcrackers were able to use distal cues to locate a small hidden goal. In Experiments 2 and 3, nutcrackers were given the opportunity to develop a map of a room by viewing local subsets of the landmarks in the room at a goal during training. During transfer tests, nutcrackers were presented with a landmark panorama that was not previously seen at the goal. Of 3 nutcrackers that had learned the relationship between distal cues and the goal, 3 were able to locate the goal during transfer, indicating they may have developed a cognitive map. Experiments 4 and 5 suggest that the simpler mechanism of vector integration may have been used by some nutcrackers during the transfer tests.
  • Authors

  • Gibson, Brett
  • Kamil, Alan C
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • December 2001
  • Published In


  • Animals
  • Appetitive Behavior
  • Association Learning
  • Attention
  • Birds
  • Mental Recall
  • Orientation
  • Problem Solving
  • Social Environment
  • Space Perception
  • Transfer, Psychology
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 11824904
  • Start Page

  • 403
  • End Page

  • 417
  • Volume

  • 115
  • Issue

  • 4