Date of Award
Union College Only
Bachelor of Science
movements, prey, dragonflies, capture, head
Dragonflies make their living by foraging on flying insects. We used two approaches to study their prey capture behavior. (1) Using close-up, high-speed video, we recorded the head movements of dragonflies (Sympetrum vicinum) to the movement of small moving images that simulate prey items. Our study shows that dragonflies use two distinct types of head/eye movements, tracking and saccades. The former are smooth movements that stabilize the moving prey image. The latter are jerky movements that may be involved in distance estimation. (2) Using intracellular penetration and recording, we studied a group of neurons that are thought to guide prey capture. By controlling their activity with current pulses we studied the wing steering movements that they elicit.
Grome, Natalie M., "Neural basis of visually evoked head and electrically evoked wing movements in dragonflies" (2010). Honors Theses. 1143.