Temperature Dependence of Memory in Fish3


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    Dedicated with cordial wishes to Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Bernhard Rensch on the occasion of his 80th birthday.

Zoologisches Institut der Universität Münster, Abteilung für Verhaltensforschung, Badestraße 9, D-4400 Münster.


The influence of temperature on the retention period of a pattern discrimination task (cross versus triangle) was examined on Carassius carassius, Cichlasoma nigrofasciatum and Phoxinus phoxinus. After training at optimal temperature conditions the experimental subjects were kept at a 10 °C lowered temperature, whereas for control subjects there was no temperature change. Tests, carried out every two weeks, showed a significant increase of retention for Carassius c. and Cichlasoma n.; Phoxinus p. showed a slightly more rapid forgetting. These results and investigations of oxygen-uptake indicate a direct dependence of memory processes on the metabolic level.