University of Chicago Professor Neil Shubin, a science commentator for WTTW in Chicago, discusses the remarkable memory capacity of cuttlefish, a discovery recently reported by former MBL Grass Fellow Alex Schnell and MBL’s Roger Hanlon. The segment starts at 2:00.
An international research team has found that cuttlefish retain sharp memories of specific events even into old age.
“Cuttlefish can remember what they ate, where and when, and use this to guide their feeding decisions in the future. What’s surprising is that they don’t lose this ability with age, despite showing other signs of ageing such as loss of muscle function and appetite,” said first author Alexandra Schnell of the University of Cambridge’s Department of Psychology, who conducted the experiments at the Marine Biological Laboratory In Woods Hole, Mass in collaboration with MBL Senior Scientist Roger Hanlon.
Photo: Male cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis) displaying zebra stripe while guarding a female mate. Credit: Roger Hanlon