Navigation Links
Zooming in for a safe flight
Date:9/1/2014

As nocturnal animals, bats are perfectly adapted to a life without light. They emit echolocation sounds and use the delay between the reflected echoes to measure distance to obstacles or prey. In their brains, they have a spatial map representing different echo delays. A study carried out by researchers at Technische Universitt Mnchen (TUM) has shown for the first time that this map dynamically adapts to external factors.

Closer objects appear larger

When a bat flies in too close to an object, the number of activated neurons in its brain increases. As a result, the object appears disproportionately larger on the bat's brain map than objects at a safe distance, as if it were magnified. "The map is similar to the navigation systems used in cars in that it shows bats the terrain in which they are moving," explains study director Dr. Uwe Firzlaff at the TUM Chair of Zoology. "The major difference, however, is that the bats' inbuilt system warns them of an impending collision by enhancing neuronal signals for objects that are in close proximity."

Bats constantly adapt their flight maneuvers to their surroundings to avoid collisions with buildings, trees or other animals. The ability to determine lateral distance to other objects also plays a key role here. Which is why bats process more spatial information than just echo delays. "Bats evaluate their own motion and map it against the lateral distance to objects," elaborates the researcher.

Brain processes complex spatial information

In addition to the echo reflection time, bats process the reflection angle of echoes. They also compare the sound volume of their calls with those of the reflected sound waves and measure the wave spectrum of the echo. "Our research has led us to conclude that bats display much more spatial information on their acoustic maps than just echo reflection."

The results show that the nerve cells interpret the bats' rapid responses to external stimuli by enlarging the active area in the brain to display important information. "We may have just uncovered one of the fundamental mechanisms that enables vertebrates to adapt flexibly to continuously changing environments," concludes Firzlaff.


'/>"/>

Contact: Barbara Wankerl
barbara.wankerl@tum.de
49-892-892-2562
Technische Universitaet Muenchen
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Patients with hypoventilation may need supplemental oxygen on-board flights
2. Smart Technology Consumers Interest in Mobile Payment Products Grows - Company Secures Deal with Major Airline to Display Advertisements in Flight for its Next Generation Smart Wallet
3. New feathered predatory fossil sheds light on dinosaur flight
4. Fruit fly immunity fails with fungus after (space)flight
5. Project MERCCURI crowdsourced space station samples take flight
6. Fight or flight? Vocal cues help deer decide during mating season
7. Climate change may disrupt butterfly flight seasons
8. The secrets of a bugs flight
9. Hovering is a bother for bees: Fast flight is more stable
10. New evidence of dinosaurs role in the evolution of bird flight
11. SF State biologists tag zombees to track their flight
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/2/2017)... 2017 Who risk to be deprived of ... full report: https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/4313699/ WILL APPLE AND ... Fingerprint sensors using capacitive technology represent a fast ... Idex forecasts an increase of 360% of the number ... the fingerprint sensor market between 2014 and 2017 (source ...
(Date:2/28/2017)... February 28, 2017 News solutions for biometrics, ... ... from 14 to 16 March, Materna will present its ... how seamless travel is a real benefit for passengers. To ... to their passenger touch point solutions to take passengers through the ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... BARCELONA, Spain , Feb. 24, 2017  EyeLock LLC, ... will demonstrate its elite iris biometric solution on ... with X16 LTE at Mobile World Congress ... in Qualcomm,s Booth in Hall 3, Stand ... contains the Qualcomm Haven™ security platform—a combination ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... ComplianceOnline, the leading governance, risk ... its 3rd Annual Medical Device Summit 2017 venue and speaker lineup. The Summit will ... in Boston, MA. , The Omni Parker House Hotel, which is located at 60 ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... , March 29, 2017  Halozyme Therapeutics, ... oncology and drug-delivery therapies, today announced that an ... and Drug Administration voted 11 to 0 that ... skin) injection was favorable for patients in the ... lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukemia. The FDA action ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... ACEA Biosciences, a privately owned ... travel award to noteworthy scientists who will be presenting research using ACEA Biosciences’ ... of awards are being given to two postdoctoral fellows studying pathogen capture by ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... Bactana Animal Health, a company developing natural products ... through enhancement of the gut microbiota, today announced the closing of its first round ... York-based Sustainable Income Capital Management, LLC and a number of private investors. The company ...
Breaking Biology Technology: