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Costs of Learning. Learning: Alters Behavior, Functional Efficiency Takes Advantage of Predictability Within -Generation When Uncertainty Among Generations Fitness Benefits Well Understood Plasticity, Match Behavior to Environment Vertebrates & Invertebrates

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costs of learning
Costs of Learning

Learning: Alters Behavior, Functional Efficiency

Takes Advantage of Predictability Within-Generation

When Uncertainty Among Generations

Fitness Benefits Well Understood

Plasticity, Match Behavior to Environment

Vertebrates & Invertebrates

Advances Survival & Reproduction

social learning cultural transmission
Social Learning (Cultural Transmission)

Fitness Benefit: Predator Recognition

Boreal chorus frog (Pseudacris maculata)

Tadpoles: Naïve

Woodfrog (Rana sylvatica)

Tadpoles: Models

Tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum)

Odor: Predator on tadpoles

costs of learning1
Costs of Learning

Nature: Learning Capacities Common

 Selectively Favored

If Select for Increased Learning, Improves

Rats, Bees & Several Dipterans

If Learning Advantageous, Why Doesn’t Natural Selection Favor Increase?

Selection for Intermediate Learning Capacities?

Improvement Costly?

costs of learning2
Costs of Learning

Dichotomize Costs

Constitutive (Genetic) Costs

Capacity Costly, Even if Not Used

Operating Costs

Processes of Collecting, Storing & Recalling Information Costly

constitutive costs
Constitutive Costs

Develop & Maintain Sensory/Nervous Systems

Neural Tissue Metabolically Expensive

Pleiotropic Costs: Energy/Resource Allocation

to Sensory/Nervous Functions Might

Reduce Life-History Traits

~Independent of Use

operating costs
Operating Costs

Paid When Animal Learns

Energy, Metabolic Resources

Time, “Attention”

Pleiotropic Costs to Other Traits

operating costs1
Operating Costs

Well Studied, e.g.:

Mice: Reduced Immunity

Barnard et al. 2006. Behav. Process. 72:74.

Fruit Flies: Loss Larval Competitive Ability

Mery & Kawecki. 2003. Proc. R. Soc. B270:2465.

Mery & Kawecki. 2005. Science 308:1148.

Fruit Flies: Reduced Fecundity

Mery & Kawecki. 2004. Anim. Behav. 68:589.

mery kawecki 2004 anim behav 68 589
Mery & Kawecki. 2004. Anim. Behav. 68:589.

DrosophilaLines

Artificially Selected for High Learning

Low Learning (No Learning Selection)

Quinine Aversion During Oviposition (1 Sex!)

Selected Lines: Faster Learning & Longer Memory

mery kawecki 2004 anim behav 68 5891
Mery & Kawecki. 2004. Anim. Behav. 68:589.

Selected vs Unselected: Constitutive Costs

In Selected Lines

No Conditioning vs Repeated Conditioning: Operating Costs in High-Learning Line

mery kawecki 2004 anim behav 68 5893
Mery & Kawecki. 2004. Anim. Behav. 68:589.

Correct Oviposition:

High-Learning Line

Advantaged,

Given Chance

to Learn

Does Advantage

Imply Operating

Cost?

mery kawecki 2004 anim behav 68 5894
Mery & Kawecki. 2004. Anim. Behav. 68:589.

Egg Laying:

Conditioning Affects High-Learning Only

Reduced Fecundity in

Later Cycles

No Cost in High-

Learning Without

Conditioning

burger et al 2008 evolution 62 1294
Burger et al. 2008. Evolution 62:1294.

Drosophila Lines

Artificially Selected for High Learning

Low Learning (No Learning Selection)

Separate Lines Selected for Longevity

burger et al 2008 evolution 62 12941
Burger et al. 2008. Evolution 62:1294.

Drosophila Lines

Artificially Selected for High Learning

Low Learning (No Learning Selection)

Separate Lines Selected for Longevity:

Focus on Constitutive Costs of Learning

burger et al 2008 evolution 62 12942
Burger et al. 2008. Evolution 62:1294.

Selection for Learning

Effective

Costs?

burger et al 2008 evolution 62 12943
Burger et al. 2008. Evolution 62:1294.

Cohort Survival: High-Learningvs Control

Learning: Both Sexes Significantly Shorter Lifespan

burger et al 2008 evolution 62 12944
Burger et al. 2008. Evolution 62:1294.

Select for

Longevity:

Works; Median

Lifespan Extended

By 18 Days

Learning Impaired?

burger et al 2008 evolution 62 12945
Burger et al. 2008. Evolution 62:1294.

Pleitropic Cost:

Longevity Impairs

Learning, 1 Hour

Memory Task

(Avoidance of

Mechanical Shock

Via Odor Association)