Cognitive ecology in hummingbirds: the role of sexual dimorphism and its anatomical correlates on memory

Gonzalez-Gomez, Paulina L., Madrid-Lopez, Natalia, Salazar, Juan E., Suarez, Rodrigo, Razeto-Barry, Pablo, Mpodozis, Jorge, Bozinovic, Francisco and Vasquez, Rodrigo A. (2014) Cognitive ecology in hummingbirds: the role of sexual dimorphism and its anatomical correlates on memory. PLoS One, 9 3: 1-8. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0090165

Author Gonzalez-Gomez, Paulina L.
Madrid-Lopez, Natalia
Salazar, Juan E.
Suarez, Rodrigo
Razeto-Barry, Pablo
Mpodozis, Jorge
Bozinovic, Francisco
Vasquez, Rodrigo A.
Title Cognitive ecology in hummingbirds: the role of sexual dimorphism and its anatomical correlates on memory
Journal name PLoS One   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication date 2014-03-05
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0090165
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 9
Issue 3
Start page 1
End page 8
Total pages 8
Place of publication San Francisco, United States
Publisher Public Library of Science
Language eng
Subject 2700 Medicine
1300 Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
1100 Agricultural and Biological Sciences
Abstract In scatter-hoarding species, several behavioral and neuroanatomical adaptations allow them to store and retrieve thousands of food items per year. Nectarivorous animals face a similar scenario having to remember quality, location and replenishment schedules of several nectar sources. In the green-backed firecrown hummingbird (Sephanoides sephanoides), males are territorial and have the ability to accurately keep track of nectar characteristics of their defended food sources. In contrast, females display an opportunistic strategy, performing rapid intrusions into males territories. In response, males behave aggressively during the non-reproductive season. In addition, females have higher energetic demands due to higher thermoregulatory costs and travel times. The natural scenario of this species led us to compared cognitive abilities and hippocampal size between males and females. Males were able to remember nectar location and renewal rates significantly better than females. However, the hippocampal formation was significantly larger in females than males. We discuss these findings in terms of sexually dimorphic use of spatial resources and variable patterns of brain dimorphisms in birds.
Keyword Multidisciplinary Sciences
Science & Technology - Other Topics
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Grant ID 1130015
Institutional Status Non-UQ
Additional Notes Article number e90165.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Non HERDC
Queensland Brain Institute Publications
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