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Is behavioral flexibility manipulatable and, if so, does it improve flexibility and problem solving in a new context?
use asterix (*) to get italics
Corina Logan, Carolyn Rowney, Luisa Bergeron, Benjamin Seitz, Aaron Blaisdell, Zoe Johnson-Ulrich, Kelsey McCune
Please use the format "First name initials family name" as in "Marie S. Curie, Niels H. D. Bohr, Albert Einstein, John R. R. Tolkien, Donna T. Strickland"
This is one of the first studies planned for our long-term research on the role of behavioral flexibility in rapid geographic range expansions. Behavioral flexibility, the ability to adapt behavior to new circumstances, is thought to play an important role in a species' ability to successfully adapt to new environments and expand its geographic range. However, behavioral flexibility is rarely directly tested in species in a way that would allow us to determine how it works and how we can make predictions about a species' ability to adapt their behavior to new environments. We use great-tailed grackles (a bird species) as a model to investigate this question because they have rapidly expanded their range into North America over the past 140 years. We aim to manipulate grackle behavioral flexibility (color tube reversal learning) to determine whether their flexibility is generalizable across contexts (touch screen reversal learning and multi-access box), whether it is repeatable within individuals and across contexts, and what learning strategies they employ. Results will allow us to understand more about what flexibility is and how it works, and validate whether a touch screen measures the same ability as the color tubes (thus facilitating faster testing that can be conducted in the wild).
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Behavioral flexibility, problem solving, reversal learning, multiaccess box, repeatability, learning strategies
Behaviour & Ethology, Preregistrations, Zoology
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