Inference by exclusion in the Red-tailed Black Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksii )

Subias, Lorraine, Griffin, Andrea S., and Guez, David (2019) Inference by exclusion in the Red-tailed Black Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksii ). Integrative Zoology, 14 (2). pp. 193-203.

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Inference by exclusion is the ability to select a given option by excluding the others. When designed appropriately, tests of this ability can reveal choices that cannot be explained by associative processes. Over the past decade, exclusion reasoning has been explored in several non-human taxonomic groups including birds, mainly in Corvids and Parrots. To increase our understanding of the taxonomic distribution of exclusion reasoning and therefore its evolution, we investigated exclusion performances in Red-tailed Black cockatoos (Calyptorhynchus banksii), an Australian relative of the Goffin cockatoo (Cacatua goffinia), using a food-finding task. Cockatoos were required to find a food item hidden in one of the two experimenter's hands. Following training sessions in which they reliably selected the closed baited hand they had just been shown open, each individual was tested on four different conditions. Critical to demonstrating exclusion reasoning was the condition in which they were shown the empty hand and then offered a choice of both closed hands. The performance of all birds was above chance on all experimental conditions but not on an olfactory and/or cuing control condition. The results suggest that the birds might be able to infer by exclusion, although an explanation based on rule learning cannot be excluded. This first experiment in Red-tailed Black cockatoo highlights this species' potential as a model to study avian cognition and paves the pathway for future investigations.

Item ID: 52411
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1749-4877
Keywords: cognition; comparative cognition; inferential reasoning; parrot cognition; Psittaciforms
Copyright Information: © 2018 International Society of Zoological Sciences, Institute of Zoology/Chinese Academy of Sciences and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2018 03:33
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5299 Other psychology > 529999 Other psychology not elsewhere classified @ 80%
31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3109 Zoology > 310901 Animal behaviour @ 20%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 20%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 80%
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