Food-Caching Western Scrub-Jays Keep Track of Who Was Watching When

  title={Food-Caching Western Scrub-Jays Keep Track of Who Was Watching When},
  author={Joanna M. Dally and Nathan J. Emery and Nicola S. Clayton},
  pages={1662 - 1665}
Western scrub-jays (Aphelocoma californica) hide food caches for future consumption, steal others' caches, and engage in tactics to minimize the chance that their own caches will be stolen. We show that scrub-jays remember which individual watched them during particular caching events and alter their recaching behavior accordingly. We found no evidence to suggest that a storer's use of cache protection tactics is cued by the observer's behavior. 
Re-caching by Western Scrub-Jays (Aphelocoma californica) Cannot Be Attributed to Stress
It is argued that the Stress Model cannot account for scrub-jay re-caching, and evidence strongly contradicting the central assumption of these models: that stress drives caching, irrespective of social context is presented.
No evidence of temporal preferences in caching by Western scrub-jays (Aphelocoma californica)☆
Avian Theory of Mind and counter espionage by food-caching western scrub-jays (Aphelocoma californica)
The inference is that jays with prior experience of stealing others' caches engage in experience projection, relating information about their previous experience as a pilferer to the possibility of future cache theft by another bird.
The Effects of Social Context on the Food-Caching Behavior of Florida Scrub-Jays (Aphelocoma coerulescens)
Non-breeding helpers were less likely to cache in the presence of the dominant male breeder than when alone and all jays tended to cache out of sight when observed by another jay, consistent with cache protection strategies employed by other species.
Peep to pilfer: what scrub-jays like to watch when observing others
Western scrub-jays do not appear to attend to functionality in Aesop’s Fable experiments
Western scrub-jays are tested in a non-caching context using the Aesop’s Fable paradigm, where a partially filled tube of water contains a floating food reward and objects must be inserted to displace the water and bring the food within reach.
Social cognition by food-caching corvids. The western scrub-jay as a natural psychologist
Food-caching corvids hide food, but such caches are susceptible to pilfering by other individuals. Consequently, the birds use several counter strategies to protect their caches from theft, e.g.
Careful cachers and prying pilferers: Eurasian jays (Garrulus glandarius) limit auditory information available to competitors
  • R. Shaw, N. Clayton
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2013
The results suggest that jays reduce auditory information during caching as a cache-protection strategy, and raise the possibility that jay both understand and can attribute auditory perception to another individual.


The social suppression of caching in western scrub-jays (Aphelocoma californica)
Western scrub-jays appear to adjust their caching behaviour depending on the risk that observers pose to their caches, as caches were only moved around repeatedly on trials where multiple pilfering attempts were made.
Western scrub-jays (Aphelocoma californica) use cognitive strategies to protect their caches from thieving conspecifics
The results suggest that scrub-jays use flexible, cognitive caching and recovery strategies to aid in reducing potential future pilfering of caches by conspecifics.
Effects of experience and social context on prospective caching strategies by scrub jays
It is shown that jays with prior experience of pilfering another bird's caches subsequently re-cached food in new cache sites during recovery trials, but only when they had been observed caching.
Social Caching and Observational Spatial Memory in Pinyon Jays
In the wild, pinyon jays (Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus) live in large, integrated flocks and cache tens of thousands of seeds per year. This study explored social aspects of caching and recovering by
Influence of competitors on caching behaviour in the common raven,Corvus corax
It is shown that in the presence of competitors, common ravens instead cached further from the food source, provided they had space into which they could escape from the sight of the competitors.
Observational spatial memory in Clark's nutcrackers and Mexican jays
The results suggest that observational spatial memory could be common among corvids and that its degree of development may be influenced by group living.
Observational learning and the raiding of food caches in ravens, Corvus corax: is it ‘tactical’ deception?
Abstract Group-foraging ravens scatter-hoard when they are competing for food and, to some extent, also raid the caches made by others. We investigated the effects of observational spatial memory on
Episodic-like memory during cache recovery by scrub jays
It is shown that scrub jays remember ‘when’ food items are stored by allowing them to recover perishable ‘wax worms’ (wax-moth larvae) and non-perishable peanuts which they had previously cached in visuospatially distinct sites.
Do chimpanzees know what conspecifics know?
Chimpanzees know what conspecifics have and have not seen (do and do not know), and that they use this information to devise effective social-cognitive strategies.