+ Site Statistics
+ Search Articles
+ PDF Full Text Service
How our service works
Request PDF Full Text
+ Follow Us
Follow on Facebook
Follow on Twitter
Follow on LinkedIn
+ Subscribe to Site Feeds
Most Shared
PDF Full Text
+ Translate
+ Recently Requested

Motion as a source of environmental information: a fresh view on biological motion computation by insect brains

Motion as a source of environmental information: a fresh view on biological motion computation by insect brains

Frontiers in Neural Circuits 8: 127

Despite their miniature brains insects, such as flies, bees and wasps, are able to navigate by highly erobatic flight maneuvers in cluttered environments. They rely on spatial information that is contained in the retinal motion patterns induced on the eyes while moving around ("optic flow") to accomplish their extraordinary performance. Thereby, they employ an active flight and gaze strategy that separates rapid saccade-like turns from translatory flight phases where the gaze direction is kept largely constant. This behavioral strategy facilitates the processing of environmental information, because information about the distance of the animal to objects in the environment is only contained in the optic flow generated by translatory motion. However, motion detectors as are widespread in biological systems do not represent veridically the velocity of the optic flow vectors, but also reflect textural information about the environment. This characteristic has often been regarded as a limitation of a biological motion detection mechanism. In contrast, we conclude from analyses challenging insect movement detectors with image flow as generated during translatory locomotion through cluttered natural environments that this mechanism represents the contours of nearby objects. Contrast borders are a main carrier of functionally relevant object information in artificial and natural sceneries. The motion detection system thus segregates in a computationally parsimonious way the environment into behaviorally relevant nearby objects and-in many behavioral contexts-less relevant distant structures. Hence, by making use of an active flight and gaze strategy, insects are capable of performing extraordinarily well even with a computationally simple motion detection mechanism.

Please choose payment method:

(PDF emailed within 0-6 h: $19.90)

Accession: 054474336

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 25389392

DOI: 10.3389/fncir.2014.00127

Related references

The Importance of Spatiotemporal Information in Biological Motion Perception: White Noise Presented with a Step-like Motion Activates the Biological Motion Area. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 29(2): 277-285, 2016

Two-dimensional local motion information needed for 3D global motion computation. Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science 35(4): 1257, 1994

Motion or emotion: Infants discriminate emotional biological motion based on low-level visual information. Infant Behavior and Development 57: 101324, 2019

Influence of environmental information in natural scenes and the effects of motion adaptation on a fly motion-sensitive neuron during simulated flight. Biology Open 4(1): 13-21, 2014

Form overshadows 'opponent motion' information in processing of biological motion from point light walker stimuli. Vision Research 50(1): 118-126, 2011

Differential cortical processing of local and global motion information in biological motion: an event-related potential study. Journal of Vision 8(16): 2.1-217, 2009

The Sound Field of a Source That Executes in a Liquid Layer a Motion Represented as the Sum of a Subsonic Uniform Rectilinear Motion and a Periodic Motion. Exact (Explicit) Solutions. Journal of Mathematical Sciences 117(2): 4020-4027, 2003

Intact "biological motion" and "structure from motion" perception in a patient with impaired motion mechanisms: a case study. Visual Neuroscience 5(4): 353-369, 1990

Perception of coherent motion, biological motion and form-from-motion under dim-light conditions. Vision Research 39(22): 3721-3727, 1999

Two Modes of Motion Perception A Double-dissociation of the effects of contrast and field of view on perception of object-motion and self-motion. 2011

The neural computation of visual motion information. Unknown, 2006

Multiple-stage ambiguity in motion perception reveals global computation of local motion directions. Journal of Vision 16(15): 7, 2017

A two dimensional field theory for motion computation. First order approximation; translatory motion of rigid patterns. Biological Cybernetics 60(1): 23-35, 1988

Motion-contrast computation without directionally selective motion sensors. Physical Review. E, Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics 70(3 Pt 1): 031907, 2004

Source characterization for broadband ground-motion simulation; kinematic heterogeneous source model and strong motion generation area. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America 93(6): 2531-2545, 2003