Bilateral Symmetry in Crayfish Behavioral Reactions
The crayfish, Procambarus cubensis, placed in the central area of a plus-maze preferred to go forward in about 50% of trials; they chose the right or left arm in 20.7 and 18.9% of the trials, respectively. In a T-maze, the difference between right and left directions was also insignificant. When exploring a plusmaze, the crayfish turned to 180° at the end of the arms, then turned to 90° going to the next arm. The mean difference between the right and left U-turns, and the right and left turns was insignificant though some animals demonstrated a left or right preference. There was a strong correlation between the direction of U-turns and following turns ensuring the clockwise or anti-clockwise movements of the crayfish. Also we examined a possible preference of the right or left claw in the feeding behavior of the crayfish. The crayfish caught a small bloodworm given from above equally with the right or left claw. The crayfish conditioned to take a bloodworm with a claw did not demonstrate any stable preference of left or right claw in the course of the experiments. The question of bilateral asymmetries within the decapod crustaceans is discussed.
KeywordsCrayfish plus-maze T-maze directional preference claw preference
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