Published: 29 November 2017
Created: 29 November 2017
GALERY PHOTO | Photos - Pramono
Mark O'Hara (Univ. of Vienna)
Berenika M. mioduszewska (Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, Germany)
Lecture on Wednesday 11/29/2017 - The Goffin’s cockatoo (Cacatuagoffiniana), a species endemic to the Tanimbar Archipelago in Maluku, Indonesia, has showed remarkable cognitive skills in previous studies conducted in captivity(Auersperg et al., 2014; Auersperg, Kacelnik, & von Bayern, 2013; Auersperg, Szabo, von Bayern, & Kacelnik, 2012; Auersperg, Laumer, & Bugnyar, 2013; O’Hara, Auersperg, Bugnyar, & Huber, 2015).
A recent pilot expedition conducted within the framework of an inter-institutional cooperation between the Indonesian Institute of Science (LIPI) and the Messerli Research Institute at the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, Austria, investigated the ecological factors promoting such advanced cognition and revealed first valuable insights into the feeding ecology of this species.
The current project aimed at extendingour knowledge about the dietary composition, foraging behaviour and innovativeness of wild Goffin’s cockatoos. For this purpose, a research station (Goffin Lab Tanimbar),including an aviary for behavioural capture-release studies on wild cockatoos,was established. Additionally, several transects within a 6km radius around the station were opportunistically scanned to gather information on feeding ecology. The results provide evidence that Goffin's cockatoosuse a wide variety of food sources and employdiverse foraging techniques.To investigate innovation rates, we presented 12wild-caught individuals with an innovation arena consisting of 20 novel tasks requiringextractive foraging. Subjects had to perform simple distinct actions in order to retrieve a food reward. For comparative analysis, the same experiment is being conducted at Goffin Lab Goldegg, Austria, on a long-term laboratory colony of Goffin's cockatoos. Based on the preliminary results, we suggest that although wild cockatoos differ in the ratio of approaching the taskswhen compared to lab-housed individuals, their potential to solve unfamiliar tasks is similar.
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