BASC_201_-_Lecture_18_(Mar_13_-_Prof._Lefebvre)

BASC_201_Lecture_1 - 18 8 Thursday(BASC 201 Lecture 18 Prof Lefebvre Prof Lefebvre Thursday(BASC 201 Lecture 18 Prof Lefebvre A few things from

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Thursday, March 13, 2008 (BASC 201: Lecture 18) Prof. Lefebvre 8 MARCH 13, 2008 – Prof. Lefebvre 18
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Thursday, March 13, 2008 (BASC 201: Lecture 18) Prof. Lefebvre A few things from last lecture: - Brain size is proportional to body size, but not 1:1 ratio (allometry) - Bird brains, once corrected for body mass and phylogeny (evolutionary influences) are at times bigger than many mammals; in other words, birds have absolute brain sizes in the range of primates and residual (corrected for body size) brain sizes bigger than many mammals; chickens and emus are way below the average bird brain size – “bird brain” only applies to them! - All invertebrates are more intelligent than vertebrates is also not true: octopus and cuddlefish (both invertebrates) have corrected brain size larger than fish! - We can’t think of evolutionary as a ladder with invertebrates at the bottom and primates and humans at the top. Think of it more as a tree, with diet and lifestyles pushing evolution into developing larger brains as adaptations Two conceptions of intelligence: modules or g (general) modules are specialized cognitive abilities, independent of each other, controlled by restricted areas of the brain; we can expect a patchy distribution across taxa, as well as trade-offs. G is likely to show continuous distribution across taxa, as well as positive correlations between taxonomic differences in different cognitive measures - 30% variance is due to General intelligence, that is 30% of how one does on different tests is commonly related because of the G intelligence - Modular intelligence: different parts of the brain control different modular intelligences. Ie. Playing trivial pursuit and driving will yield different MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) images - The hippocampus is the one part of the brain that continues to produce new cells to store memories – taxi drivers in London have larger hippocampuses than the average person and the size of their hippocampus is directly proportional to driving experiences – the hippocampus is specialized for one particular module - Only animals that have lifestyles that require a large memory will have their hippocampus developed – ie. Squirrels need to remember what they’ve hidden their food but chipmunks don’t because they bring their food back to the same place each time (burrow)
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Thursday, March 13, 2008 (BASC 201: Lecture 18) Prof. Lefebvre Modules in Birds Spatial memory and song in the avian brain: the hippocampus and the HVC-RA-area X circuit show seasonal changes In birds, the HVC and RA are the singing nuclei and HF is the hippocampus. Both HVC/RA and hippocampus grow new neurons, but they are utulized at different
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This note was uploaded on 04/29/2008 for the course BASC 201 taught by Professor Lefebvre during the Winter '08 term at McGill.

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BASC_201_Lecture_1 - 18 8 Thursday(BASC 201 Lecture 18 Prof Lefebvre Prof Lefebvre Thursday(BASC 201 Lecture 18 Prof Lefebvre A few things from

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