Selective Attention, Priming, and Foraging Behavior

Alan C. Kamil, Alan B. Bond

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter discusses the results of experiments that investigated animal cognition in an integrative fashion by combining the methodology and insights of experimental psychology and evolutionary biology. This combination can be extraordinarily fruitful, yielding novel perspectives that can be applied broadly to the study of animal learning and memory. The chapter focuses on selective attention, priming, and foraging behavior in animals, along with spatial cognition and transitive inference. Considerations of how foraging animals might use selective attention while searching for cryptic prey have resulted in interesting questions that focus on the mechanisms of selective attention. Two naturally occurring foraging patterns, hunting by expectation and searching image, are related to two phenomena studied under laboratory conditions, associative priming and sequential priming.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComparative Cognition
Subtitle of host publicationExperimental Explorations of Animal Intelligence
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199848461
ISBN (Print)9780195377804
StatePublished - Mar 22 2012


  • Animal cognition
  • Animal learning
  • Evolutionary biology
  • Expectation
  • Experimental psychology
  • Foraging behavior
  • Prey
  • Priming
  • Selective attention
  • Transitive inference

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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