Cuttlefish use visual cues to control three-dimensional skin papillae for camouflage

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2009
Authors:J. J. Allen, Mäthger, L. M., Barbosa, A., Hanlon, R. T.
Journal:Journal of Comparative Physiology A: Neuroethology Sensory Neural and Behavioral PhysiologyJournal of Comparative Physiology A: Neuroethology Sensory Neural and Behavioral PhysiologyJournal of Comparative Physiology a-Neuroethology Sensory Neural and Beha
Volume:195
Pagination:547-555
Date Published:Jun
Type of Article:Article
ISBN Number:0340-7594
Accession Number:ISI:000266584100003
Keywords:Cephalopod behavior, CEPHALOPOD DYNAMIC CAMOUFLAGE, COLORATION, DISRUPTIVE BODY PATTERNS, Dynamic camouflage, EDGE, OBJECTS, PERCEPTION, RESPONSES, Sepia officinalis, SEPIA-OFFICINALIS, STIMULI, SUBSTRATE, Texture, Visual perception
Abstract:

Cephalopods (octopus, squid and cuttlefish) are known for their camouflage. Cuttlefish Sepia officinalis use chromatophores and light reflectors for color change, and papillae to change three-dimensional physical skin texture. Papillae vary in size, shape and coloration; nine distinct sets of papillae are described here. The objective was to determine whether cuttlefish use visual or tactile cues to control papillae expression. Cuttlefish were placed on natural substrates to evoke the three major camouflage body patterns: Uniform/Stipple, Mottle and Disruptive. Three versions of each substrate were presented: the actual substrate, the actual substrate covered with glass (removes tactile information) and a laminated photograph of the substrate (removes tactile and three-dimensional information because depth-of-field information is unavailable). No differences in Small dorsal papillae or Major lateral mantle papillae expression were observed among the three versions of each substrate. Thus, visual (not tactile) cues drive the expression of papillae in S. officinalis. Two sets of papillae (Major lateral mantle papillae and Major lateral eye papillae) showed irregular responses; their control requires future investigation. Finally, more Small dorsal papillae were shown in Uniform/Stipple and Mottle patterns than in Disruptive patterns, which may provide clues regarding the visual mechanisms of background matching versus disruptive coloration.

Short Title:J. Comp. Physiol. A -Neuroethol. Sens. Neural Behav. Physiol.
Alternate Journal:J. Comp. Physiol. A -Neuroethol. Sens. Neural Behav. Physiol.
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith