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Multiple Reference Usage in the Zonal Recovery Behavior by the Fiddler Crab Uca Cumulanta

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image of Journal of Crustacean Biology

Abstract Prevalence of certain celestial and terrestrial cues was tested in the zonal recovery behavior and orientation of the fiddler crab Uca cumulanta. Experiments were conducted in the field bordering a mangrove forest on the eastern Venezuelan coast. Uca cumulanta exhibited zonal recovery behavior based on different orientational references, including celestial cues (sun and polarized sky light) and terrestrial cues (landscape vision and substrate slope). Sun azimuth orientation was time-compensated. Apparent solar position and polarized sunlight pattern were celestial cues which, as tested, prevailed over landscape references and beach slope—terrestrial cues—in cueing the direction of the orientation response shown by crabs.

Affiliations: 1: a Centro de Ecología, Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas, Apartado 21827, Caracas 1020A, Venezuela


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