Chapter

Assessing Risk: Embryos, Information, and Escape Hatching

Edited by Karen M. Warkentin

in Cognitive Ecology II

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780226169354
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226169378 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226169378.003.0010
Assessing Risk: Embryos, Information, and Escape Hatching

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This chapter reviews recent experiments related to cognition at the embryonic stage. It is considered that that embryo possesses sophisticated abilities to assess and respond to cues of predation. Information, detection, and decision theory have played key roles in studies of animal communication. Students of predator–prey interactions have considered how prey should behave under the typical context of imperfect information about risk. The authors note that embryonic cognition is an essential yet relatively neglected aspect of cognitive research even though it is relevant for many animals. The association of empirical studies of risk assessment mechanisms to the theoretical framework of information, detection, and decision theory provides both testable hypotheses for empirical work and new contexts in which to assess the generality of these bodies of theory.

Keywords: embryonic stage; predation; information; detection; decision theory

Chapter.  8831 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Animal Behaviour and Behavioural Ecology

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