Published: August 29th, 2016
This manuscript describes the setup, implementation, and analysis of boldness, aggression, and shoaling in zebrafish and testing for the presence of a behavioral syndrome. A standardized approach for behavioral quantification will allow for easier comparison across studies. Modifications to this protocol are possible as each assay can be run individually.
A behavioral syndrome exists when specific behaviors interact under different contexts. Zebrafish have been test subjects in recent studies and it is important to standardize protocols to ensure proper analyses and interpretations. In our previous studies, we have measured boldness by monitoring a series of behaviors (time near surface, latency in transitions, number of transitions, and darts) in a 1.5 L trapezoidal tank. Likewise, we quantified aggression by observing bites, lateral displays, darts, and time near an inclined mirror in a rectangular 19 L tank. By dividing a 76 L tank into thirds, we also examined shoaling preferences. The shoaling assay is a highly customizable assay and can be tailored for specific hypotheses. However, protocols for this assay also must be standardized, yet flexible enough for customization. In previous studies, end chambers were either empty, contained 5 or 10 zebrafish, or 5 pearl danios (D. albolineatus). In the following manuscript, we present a detailed protocol and representative data that accompany successful applications of the protocol, which will allow for replication of behavioral syndrome experiments.
There is a growing body of literature investigating the associations between distinct behaviors within individual animals from a given population. These associations are termed behavioral syndromes, and the measurements typically include boldness, aggression, exploratory behavior, and sociability1-5. Behavioral syndromes are valuable for both direct and indirect reasons. Directly, knowledge of behavioral syndromes can provide a more complete view of evolutionary theory, population structure, and population dynamics3. Indirectly, knowledge regarding behavioral associations may inform fields that quantify behavior such as pharmacology6 ,....
The following methodologies for the housing, care, and study of zebrafish have been approved by the Saint Joseph's University IACUC.
1. Zebrafish Housing and Care
Depending on the nature of the study, and specific protocol employed, several distinct results are possible in a behavioral syndromes experiment. The following tables and figures, where indicated, are adapted from our previous study published in the journal Behavioural Processes14 and the journal Zebrafish17. When the proposal (as described above) is carried out in its entirety, two sets of results, 'within assay correlations' and 'between assay correlati.......
The protocol will determine if there are consistent associations in boldness, aggression, and shoaling behaviors in zebrafish. If there are consistent associations in a given population between any of these behaviors, then a behavioral syndrome is present. By studying a population's natural behavioral syndrome, researchers can have a more complete understanding of its behavioral dynamic, population structure, and possibly evolutionary history3. Furthermore, manipulating the environment that affects these b.......
This work was supported by a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Education Grant and an internal grant from the Saint Joseph's University chapter of Sigma Xi. We would also like to thank the three anonymous reviewers who helped strengthen the protocol and interpretations.....
|Zebrafish Rack System
|Cat. # ZS550
|Pet Valu Tropical Fish Food, 224.0g
|Cat. # 31700
|Premium Grade Brine Shrimp Eggs, 16 oz
|Brine Shrimp Direct
|1.5 L Trapezoidal Tank
|Pentair Aquatic Ecosystems
|Cat. # itsts-a
|19L rectangular tank
|That Fish Place
|76L rectangular tank
|That Fish Place
|Hitachi KP-D20A CCD Camera
|Nikon AF Nikkor 35-105mm f/305~4.5s MACRO lens
|ArtMinds Square Mirror, Value Pack 3"x3"
|Cat. # 10334162
|SPSS Statistics Base
|The R Foundation
Copyright © 2024 MyJoVE Corporation. All rights reserved