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How can nervous systems be both strikingly flexible and remarkably robust, and how do these phenomena simultaneously give rise to widespread similarity and incredible diversity in animal behavior? We are using charismatic poison frogs as model system to ask these questions.
Cognitive mapping allows us to build internal representations of the world, and is critical to episodic memory and visualization. I explore the potential evolutionary origins of cognitive mapping, to show how the circuitry for basic foraging decision can be straightforwardly expanded for affective valuation and cognitive map construction in the foraging simulation, ASIMOV.
We're going to look at a set of cross-species parallel tasks where we will ask whether mice, rats, and humans are sensitive to sunk costs (spoiler alert: they are) and what they do to avoid them.