Computational, Systems and Developmental Neuroscience

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Zebrafish behavioral development

How does zebrafish behavior develop, and how is this development constrained by the fish's changing relationship with the environment? We are particularly interested in the development prey-hunting, a complex visually-driven behavior that develops from 5 days post-fertilization.

In this paper we showed that over the subsequent 10 days of development the fish's ability to catch prey improves. We have recently reviewed the neural circuits underlying prey capture in larval zebrafish here.

In work we will be submitting for publication soon we have developed a pipeline for computational fluid dynamics simulations of experimentally-recorded zebrafish swim bouts. This allows us to investigate how the energy required for different types of movements changes as the fish grows and its Reynolds number changes. Remarkably, we find that the fish adapt to this by changing the frequency with which they select different types of movements, so that more expensive movements are chosen less often. Watch this space!