Roles

Aawaz R. Pokhrel '19, Gettysburg College

Julia A. Giannini '18, Gettysburg College

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

5-15-2018

Department

Physics

Abstract

Throughout the animal kingdom, animals frequently benefit from living in groups. Models of collective behaviour show that simple local interactions are sufficient to generate group morphologies found in nature (swarms, flocks and mills). However, individuals also interact with the complex noisy environment in which they live. In this work, we experimentally investigate the group performance in navigating a noisy light gradient of two unrelated freshwater species: golden shiners (Notemigonuscrysoleucas) and rummy nose tetra (Hemigrammus bleheri). We find that tetras outperform shiners due to their innate individual ability to sense the environmental gradient. Using numerical simulations, we examine how group performance depends on the relative weight of social and environmental information. Our results highlight the importance of balancing of social and environmental information to promote optimal group morphologies and performance.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

DOI

10.1038/s41598-018-26037-9

Required Publisher's Statement

Original version is available from the publisher at: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-26037-9#Sec12

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