Document Detail

The use of background matching vs. masquerade for camouflage in cuttlefish Sepia officinalis.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21964504     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Cuttlefish, Sepia officinalis, commonly use their visually-guided, rapid adaptive camouflage for multiple tactics to avoid detection or recognition by predators. Two common tactics are background matching and resembling an object (masquerade) in the immediate area. This laboratory study investigated whether cuttlefish preferentially camouflage themselves to resemble a three-dimensional (3D) object in the immediate visual field (via the mechanism of masquerade/deceptive resemblance) rather than the 2D benthic substrate surrounding them (via the mechanisms of background matching or disruptive coloration). Cuttlefish were presented with a combination of benthic substrates (natural rocks or artificial checkerboard and grey printouts) and 3D objects (natural rocks or cylinders with artificial checkerboards and grey printouts glued to the outside) with visual features known to elicit each of three camouflage body pattern types (Uniform, Mottle and Disruptive). Animals were tested for a preference to show a body pattern appropriate for the 3D object or the benthic substrate. Cuttlefish responded by masquerading as the 3D object, rather than resembling the benthic substrate, only when presented with a high-contrast object on a substrate of lower contrast. Contrast is, therefore, one important cue in the cuttlefish's preference to resemble 3D objects rather than the benthic substrate.
Kendra C Buresch; Lydia M Mäthger; Justine J Allen; Chelsea Bennice; Neal Smith; Jonathan Schram; Chuan-Chin Chiao; Charles Chubb; Roger T Hanlon
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2011-9-22
Journal Detail:
Title:  Vision research     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1878-5646     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2011 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-10-3     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0417402     Medline TA:  Vision Res     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Marine Resources Center, Marine Biological Laboratory, 7 MBL Street, Woods Hole, MA 02543, United States.
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