This has yet to be tested in animals such as fish that do not live near humans, however, many social animals that recognize conspecific individuals are equally capable of discriminating those individuals under a range of viewing conditions. Fish present an interesting example as they can use colour patterns for recognition which are additionally affected by changes in water quality and lighting. Because different wavelengths are attenuated unequally in water, some colours within a pattern are affected more than others.
It is possible that the perceived complexity of human facial recognition may simply be an anthropogenic point of view and in fact other animals must also perform similarly complex pattern discrimination tasks under highly demanding conditions The archerfish used in this experiment were kept as described in Newport, et al. The fish had different levels of previous experience, however all subjects had at least been pre-trained to spit at stimuli presented on a computer monitor, following methods described in Newport, et al. The images in this database have had extraneous cues e.
Three aspects of the images in Experiment 2 were standardized. The experimental apparatus and stimulus presentation were as described in Newport, et al. A two-alternative forced choice 2-AFC procedure was used and images were displayed on each half of the monitor monitor coordinates: 0—, 0 , one of which was rewarded if hit. Fish were rewarded with one food pellet Cichlid Gold, Kyorin Co. Selection of the incorrect stimulus terminated the trial. Each training session consisted of 21—31 trials, depending on the individual level of motivation in a particular session. During testing, a pool of 44 faces was used as novel stimuli.
Trials with previously seen stimuli were excluded from analysis, therefore a testing block consisted of 44 trials. Training was run generally using the same procedures as in Experiment 1, however, no intermediary training stage was used as we felt it had little impact on the ability of the fish to complete the task. During testing, a pool of 18 novel faces was used.
A single session consisted of 30 trials, therefore more than one block was completed per session.
For each experiment we used a Generalized Linear Mixed Model with a binomial distribution with log-link function. Fish ID and block number were included as random factors. In addition, Fish ID and block number were included as separate, crossed random factors. How to cite this article : Newport, C. Discrimination of human faces by archerfish Toxotes chatareus. Diamond, R. Why faces are and are not special: An effect of expertise.
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