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Feeding Kinematics

Vrajeshri Patel, Jamie Craig, Michelle Schumacher, Martin K Burns, Ionut Florescu, Ramana Vinjamuri
Traditionally, repetitive practice of a task is used to learn a new skill, exhibiting as immediately improved performance. Research suggests, however, that a more experience-based rather than exposure-based training protocol may allow for better transference of the skill to related tasks. In synergy-based motor control theory, fundamental motor skills, such as hand grasping, are represented with a synergy subspace that captures essential motor patterns. In this study, we propose that motor-skill learning through synergy-based mechanisms may provide advantages over traditional task repetition learning...
2017: Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology
Brianna M Wright, John K B Ford, Graeme M Ellis, Volker B Deecke, Ari Daniel Shapiro, Brian C Battaile, Andrew W Trites
BACKGROUND: We sought to quantitatively describe the fine-scale foraging behavior of northern resident killer whales (Orcinus orca), a population of fish-eating killer whales that feeds almost exclusively on Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.). To reconstruct the underwater movements of these specialist predators, we deployed 34 biologging Dtags on 32 individuals and collected high-resolution, three-dimensional accelerometry and acoustic data. We used the resulting dive paths to compare killer whale foraging behavior to the distributions of different salmonid prey species...
2017: Movement Ecology
René Felix Reinhart, Zeeshan Shareef, Jochen Jakob Steil
Feed-forward model-based control relies on models of the controlled plant, e.g., in robotics on accurate knowledge of manipulator kinematics or dynamics. However, mechanical and analytical models do not capture all aspects of a plant's intrinsic properties and there remain unmodeled dynamics due to varying parameters, unmodeled friction or soft materials. In this context, machine learning is an alternative suitable technique to extract non-linear plant models from data. However, fully data-based models suffer from inaccuracies as well and are inefficient if they include learning of well known analytical models...
February 8, 2017: Sensors
W James Cooper, Casey B Carter, Andrew J Conith, Aaron N Rice, Mark W Westneat
Most species-rich lineages of aquatic organisms have undergone divergence between forms that feed from the substrate (benthic feeding) and forms that feed from the water column (pelagic feeding). Changes in trophic niche are frequently accompanied by changes in skull mechanics, and multiple fish lineages have evolved highly specialized biomechanical configurations that allow them to protrude their upper jaws toward the prey during feeding. Damselfishes (family Pomacentridae) are an example of a species-rich lineage with multiple trophic morphologies and feeding ecologies...
December 2, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Ralph Turingan, Tyler Sloan
As a consequence of global warming, tropical invasive species are expected to expand their range pole-ward, extending their negative impacts to previously undisturbed, high-latitude ecosystems. Investigating the physiological responses of invasive species to environmental temperature is important because the coupled effects of climate change and species invasion on ecosystems could be more alarming than the effects of each phenomenon independently. Especially in poikilotherms, the rate of motion in muscle-driven biomechanical systems is expected to double for every 10 °C increase in temperature...
November 25, 2016: Biology
M Teague O'Mara, Karla Bauer, Dominik Blank, Justin W Baldwin, Dina K N Dechmann
Within the large order of bats, sexual size dimorphism measured by forearm length and body mass is often female-biased. Several studies have explained this through the effects on load carrying during pregnancy, intrasexual competition, as well as the fecundity and thermoregulation advantages of increased female body size. We hypothesized that wing shape should differ along with size and be under variable selection pressure in a species where there are large differences in flight behaviour. We tested whether load carrying, sex differential migration, or reproductive advantages of large females affect size and wing shape dimorphism in the common noctule (Nyctalus noctula), in which females are typically larger than males and only females migrate long distances each year...
2016: PloS One
K B Michel, P Aerts, S Van Wassenbergh
Few vertebrates capture prey in both the aquatic and the terrestrial environment due to the conflicting biophysical demands of feeding in water versus air. The Atlantic mudskipper (Periophthalmus barbarus) is known to be proficient at feeding in the terrestrial environment and feeds predominately in this environment. Given the considerable forward flow of water observed during the mouth-opening phase to assist with feeding on land, the mudskipper must alter the function of its feeding system to feed successfully in water...
November 15, 2016: Biology Open
James R Kerfoot, Emily Easter, Ruth M Elsey
Wetland habitats are used as nursery sites for hatchling and juvenile alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), where they utilize prey from aquatic and terrestrial settings. However, little is known about how viscosity of the medium influences feeding performance. We hypothesized that timing and linear excursion feeding kinematic variables would be different for individuals feeding on prey above the water compared with the same individuals feeding underwater. Individuals were fed immobile fish prey and feeding events were recorded using a high speed video camera...
September 30, 2016: Biology
David E Cade, Ari S Friedlaender, John Calambokidis, Jeremy A Goldbogen
Rorqual whales exhibit an extreme lunge filter-feeding strategy characterized by acceleration to high speed and engulfment of a large volume of prey-laden water [1-4]. Although tagging studies have quantified the kinematics of lunge feeding, the timing of engulfment relative to body acceleration has been modeled conflictingly because it could never be directly measured [5-7]. The temporal coordination of these processes has a major impact on the hydrodynamics and energetics of this high-cost feeding strategy [5-9]...
October 10, 2016: Current Biology: CB
Jayne M Gardiner, Jelle Atema, Robert E Hueter, Philip J Motta
The ability of predators to modulate prey capture in response to the size, location, and behavior of prey is critical to successful feeding on a variety of prey types. Modulating in response to changes in sensory information may be critical to successful foraging in a variety of environments. Three shark species with different feeding morphologies and behaviors were filmed using high-speed videography while capturing live prey: the ram-feeding blacktip shark, the ram-biting bonnethead, and the suction-feeding nurse shark...
August 25, 2016: Zoology: Analysis of Complex Systems, ZACS
Egon Heiss, Marie De Vylder
Transitions between aquatic and terrestrial prey capture are challenging. Trophic shifts demand a high degree of behavioral flexibility to account for different physical circumstances between water and air to keep performance in both environments. The Himalayan newt, Tylototriton verrucosus, is mostly terrestrial but becomes aquatic during its short breeding period. Nonetheless, it was assumed that it lacks the capability of trophic behavioral flexibility, only captures prey on land by its tongue (lingual prehension) and does not feed in water...
October 15, 2016: Biology Open
P S Segre, D E Cade, F E Fish, J Potvin, A N Allen, J Calambokidis, A S Friedlaender, J A Goldbogen
Maneuverability is one of the most important and least understood aspects of animal locomotion. The hydrofoil-like flippers of cetaceans are thought to function as control surfaces that effect maneuvers, but quantitative tests of this hypothesis have been lacking. Here we construct a simple hydrodynamic model to predict the longitudinal-axis roll performance of fin whales, and we test its predictions against kinematic data recorded by on-board movement sensors from 27 free-swimming fin whales. We found that for a given swimming speed and roll excursion, the roll velocity of fin whales calculated from our field data agrees well with that predicted by our hydrodynamic model...
September 2, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Aaron M Olsen, Mark W Westneat
Many musculoskeletal systems, including the skulls of birds, fishes, and some lizards consist of interconnected chains of mobile skeletal elements, analogous to linkage mechanisms used in engineering. Biomechanical studies have applied linkage models to a diversity of musculoskeletal systems, with previous applications primarily focusing on two-dimensional linkage geometries, bilaterally symmetrical pairs of planar linkages, or single four-bar linkages. Here, we present new, three-dimensional (3D), parallel linkage models of the skulls of birds and fishes and use these models (available as free kinematic simulation software), to investigate structure-function relationships in these systems...
December 2016: Journal of Morphology
AliReza Alizadeh, Zeinab Taleb, Bita Ebrahimi, Vahid Esmaeili, Abdolhossein Shaverdi, Javad Nasr, Abolfazl Kheimeh, Reza Salman Yazdi
OBJECTIVE: Although key roles for dietary vitamin E (VITE) and fatty acid (FA) in fertility have been confirmed, limited data are available on the effects of VITE alone, or a constant level of VITE supplemented by dietary omega-6 and omega-3 FAs in combination on male reproduction. Consequently in this paper, the effects of VITE, sunflower oil, fish oil and their combination on rat sperm were investigated. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We divided 50 mature male Wistar rats into 5 groups (n=10) in a experimental completely randomized design for eight weeks: i...
July 2016: Cell Journal
Marjoleine M H Roos, Gi-Mick Wu, Patrick J O Miller
Respiration rate has been used as an indicator of metabolic rate and associated cost of transport (COT) of free-ranging cetaceans, discounting potential respiration-by-respiration variation in O2 uptake. To investigate the influence of respiration timing on O2 uptake, we developed a dynamic model of O2 exchange and storage. Individual respiration events were revealed from kinematic data from 10 adult Norwegian herring-feeding killer whales (Orcinus orca) recorded with high-resolution tags (DTAGs). We compared fixed O2 uptake per respiration models with O2 uptake per respiration estimated through a simple 'broken-stick' O2-uptake function, in which O2 uptake was assumed to be the maximum possible O2 uptake when stores are depleted or maximum total body O2 store minus existing O2 store when stores are close to saturated...
July 1, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Sam Van Wassenbergh, Egon Heiss
A unique example of phenotypic flexibility of the oral apparatus is present in newts (Salamandridae) that seasonally change between an aquatic and a terrestrial habitat. Newts grow flaps of skin between their upper and lower jaws, the labial lobes, to partly close the corners of the mouth when they adopt an aquatic lifestyle during their breeding season. Using hydrodynamic simulations based on μCT-scans and cranial kinematics during prey-capture in the smooth newt (Lissotriton vulgaris), we showed that this phenotypic flexibility is an adaptive solution to improve aquatic feeding performance: both suction distance and suction force increase by approximately 15% due to the labial lobes...
2016: Scientific Reports
Bhart-Anjan S Bhullar, Michael Hanson, Matteo Fabbri, Adam Pritchard, Gabe S Bever, Eva Hoffman
The avian skull is distinctive in its construction and in its function. Much of bird anatomical variety is expressed in the beak; but the beak itself, largely formed of the premaxillary bone, is set upon a shortened face and a bulbous, enlarged braincase. Here, we use original anatomical observations and reconstructions to describe the overall form of the avian skull in a larger context and to provide a general account of the evolutionary transformation from the early dinosaur skull-the skull of an archosaurian macropredator-to that of modern birds...
September 2016: Integrative and Comparative Biology
Christopher E Oufiero, Tammy Nguyen, Annie Sragner, Angelah Ellis
Functional systems, such as feeding mechanics, often involve the evolution of several components of the musculoskeletal system that are moved in coordination to capture prey. Because these systems often involve the quick movement of several structures, some feeding systems have been hypothesized to be stereotypic. While the motor activity patterns are often stereotyped, the subsequent kinematics can be variable, many times in response to variation in prey stimulus (e.g. prey position). Patterns of feeding kinematics have been well studied among vertebrates, with less attention on invertebrate systems...
September 1, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Andrew D McClellan, Timothée Pale, J Alex Messina, Scott Buso, Ahmad Shebib
The spinal locomotor networks controlling swimming behavior in larval and adult lampreys may have some important differences. As an initial step in comparing the locomotor systems in lampreys, in larval animals the relative timing of locomotor movements and muscle burst activity were determined and compared to those previously published for adults. In addition, the kinematics for free swimming in larval and adult lampreys was compared in detail for the first time. First, for swimming in larval animals, the neuromechanical phase lag between the onsets or terminations of muscle burst activity and maximum concave curvature of the body increased with increasing distance along the body, similar to that previously shown in adults...
July 2016: Physiological and Biochemical Zoology: PBZ
Elisa De Stefani, Doriana De Marco, Maurizio Gentilucci
AIM: Do the emotional content and meaning of sentences affect the kinematics of successive motor sequences? MATERIAL AND METHODS: Participants observed video-clips of an actor pronouncing sentences expressing positive or negative emotions and meanings (related to happiness or anger in Experiment 1 and food admiration or food disgust in Experiment 2). Then, they reached-to-grasp and placed a sugar lump on the actor's mouth. Participants acted in response to sentences whose content could convey (1) emotion (i...
2016: Frontiers in Psychology
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