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Type of publication: Journal Article
Type of document: Full Paper

Year: 2015

Authors: O"Hara, M; Auersperg, AM; Bugnyar, T; Huber, L

Title: Inference by Exclusion in Goffin Cockatoos (Cacatua goffini).

Source: PLoS One. 2015; 10(8):e0134894

Authors Vetmeduni Vienna:

Auersperg Alice Isabel Marie
Huber Ludwig
O'Hara Mark Christopher

Vetmed Research Units
Messerli Research Institute, Comparative Cognition

Inference by exclusion, the ability to base choices on the systematic exclusion of alternatives, has been studied in many nonhuman species over the past decade. However, the majority of methodologies employed so far are hard to integrate into a comparative framework as they rarely use controls for the effect of neophilia. Here, we present an improved approach that takes neophilia into account, using an abstract two-choice task on a touch screen, which is equally feasible for a large variety of species. To test this approach we chose Goffin cockatoos (Cacatua goffini), a highly explorative Indonesian parrot species, which have recently been reported to have sophisticated cognitive skills in the technical domain. Our results indicate that Goffin cockatoos are able to solve such abstract two-choice tasks employing inference by exclusion but also highlight the importance of other response strategies.

Keywords Pubmed: Animals
Choice Behavior/physiology*
Discrimination (Psychology)/physiology*
Linear Models
Psychomotor Performance/physiology*

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