Critical Population Density Triggers Rapid Formation of Vast Oceanic Fish Shoals

  title={Critical Population Density Triggers Rapid Formation of Vast Oceanic Fish Shoals},
  author={Nicholas C. Makris and Purnima Ratilal and Srinivasan Jagannathan and Zheng Gong and Mark J. Andrews and Ioannis Bertsatos and Olav Rune God{\o} and Redwood W. Nero and Josef Michael Jech},
  pages={1734 - 1737}
Similarities in the behavior of diverse animal species that form large groups have motivated attempts to establish general principles governing animal group behavior. [] Key Result By quantifying the formation processes of vast oceanic fish shoals during spawning, we show that (i) a rapid transition from disordered to highly synchronized behavior occurs as population density reaches a critical value; (ii) organized group migration occurs after this transition; and (iii) small sets of leaders significantly…
Density dependent attributes of fish aggregative behaviour
The findings suggest that fish density is a triggering factor in the formation of large fish schools and more in situ studies should be encouraged for the proper understanding of the ecological interactions that drive the structure of aquatic ecosystems and for ensuring unbiased assessment.
Towards of a firmer explanation of large shoal formation, maintenance and collective reactions in marine fish
How well the mechanisms commonly proposed to explain enhanced safety of group living prey explain fish shoals reaching very large sizes are conceptually re-examined, which finds little support from either empirical studies or classical models.
Collective Behaviour without Collective Order in Wild Swarms of Midges
It is found that correlation increases sharply with the swarm's density, indicating that the interaction between midges is based on a metric perception mechanism, suggesting that correlation, rather than order, is the true hallmark of collective behaviour in biological systems.
Propagating waves in starling, Sturnus vulgaris, flocks under predation
Collective motion and density fluctuations in bacterial colonies
This work reports simultaneous measurements of the positions, velocities, and orientations as a function of time for up to a thousand wild-type Bacillus subtilis bacteria in a colony, demonstrating that bacteria are an excellent system to study the general phenomenon of collective motion.
Ordering dynamics in collectively swimming Surf Scoters.
From behavioural analyses to models of collective motion in fish schools
A set of paradigmatic modelling assumptions whose validity remains unclear are emphasized, both from a behavioural point of view and in terms of quantitative agreement between model outcome and empirical data, for a specific and biologically oriented re-examination of these assumptions through experimental-based behavioural analysis and modelling.
Schooling Fish Under Attack Are Not All Equal: Some Lead, Others Follow
High-speed video analysis shows that schooling fish evade a threat in a non-random order, therefore individuals that are first or last to react tend to do so repeatedly over sequential stimulations, and startle order is strongly correlated with individual positional preferences.


From Disorder to Order in Marching Locusts
This work confirmed the prediction of a rapid transition from disordered to ordered movement and identified a critical density for the onset of coordinated marching in locust nymphs, and demonstrated a dynamic instability in motion at densities typical of locusts in the field.
The social organization of free‐ranging fish shoals
No evidence was found that shoals might break up into sub-units of individuals that are more phenotypically assorted than their original shoals, and the mechanisms by which assortative groups may arise and the consequences of low group fidelity for the evolution of cooperative behaviour are discussed.
When fish shoals meet: outcomes for evolution and fisheries
The dynamics of shoal encounters has important consequences for the evolution of reciprocal altruism and the transmission of information through social learning within populations, and information on encounter rates between shoals and the number of individuals that are exchanged on such occasions could be important for making predictions about the spread of disease through shoal populations.
The principles of collective animal behaviour
  • D. Sumpter
  • Biology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2005
It is argued that the key to understanding collective behaviour lies in identifying the principles of the behavioural algorithms followed by individual animals and of how information flows between the animals.
Can a minority of informed leaders determine the foraging movements of a fish shoal?
In a strongly gregarious species, such as the golden shiner, a minority of informed individuals can lead a shoal to food, either through social facilitation of foraging movements or by eliciting following behaviour.
Fish Population and Behavior Revealed by Instantaneous Continental Shelf-Scale Imaging
Until now, continental shelf environments have been monitored with highly localized line-transect methods from slow-moving research vessels. These methods significantly undersample fish populations