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Cuttlefish retrieve whether they smelt or saw a previously encountered item.

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Billard, P 
Clayton, N S 


According to the Source Monitoring Framework, the origin of a memory is remembered through the retrieval of specific features (e.g. perceptive, sensitive, affective signals). In two source discrimination tasks, we studied the ability of cuttlefish to remember the modality in which an item had been presented several hours ago. In Experiment 1, cuttlefish were able to retrieve the modality of presentation of a crab (visual vs olfactory) sensed before 1 h and 3 hrs delays. In Experiment 2, cuttlefish were trained to retrieve the modality of the presentation of fish, shrimp, and crabs. After training, cuttlefish performed the task with another item never encountered before (e.g. mussel). The cuttlefish successfully passed transfer tests with and without a delay of 3 hrs. This study is the first to show the ability to discriminate between two sensory modalities (i.e. see vs smell) in an animal. Taken together, these results suggest that cuttlefish can retrieve perceptual features of a previous event, namely whether they had seen or smelled an item.



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Scientific reports

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