Book: The Brains and Lives of Cephalopods

Discussion in 'Physiology and Biology' started by Fini, Jul 21, 2006.

  1. Fini

    Fini Wonderpus Supporter

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  2. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    You might be able to find it a university library. I imagine its very technical.

    Dan
     
  3. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    I've got it, because I'm a JZ Young groupie.

    It is, in fact, very technical; there are a lot of fantastic plates of histology of cephalopod brains, and a bit of histology of other ceph anatomy. It's generally more on the "anatomy and physiology" side of brains, with much less emphasis on behavior than Hanlon & Messenger, for example. I'm not sure it was a great investment for a non-professional like me; I think it'd be invaluable for anyone working in the specific area of ceph brain anatomy, though.

    I can be more specific if you have particular questions, but I gotta run right now...
     
  4. Fini

    Fini Wonderpus Supporter

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    Thanks. That's exactly what I had hoped to find out. I am interested more in the behavioral studies and less with actually physiology, though I do find that interesting as well.
     
  5. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    If I get a chance to make it up to the get-together in Berkeley (or wherever it ends up being) I can bring it so you can flip through and see what you think, if you'd like... In flipping through it, there are some matter-of-fact descriptions of learning and whatnot, but most of the book is stuff like "Horizontal section through the central nervous system and optic lobes. A compact group of photosensitive vesicles lies medial to each optic lobe." I think (and this is typical of JZ Young's style) that a lot of emphasis was made on making the descriptions completely dry, without much interpretation at all, just stating the facts. Young did do more interpretive essays sometimes, but he was very big on making it very clear that the facts were to be kept very distinct from the interpretations, and this book is all in the factual side of this. For example:

    "A small Grimpoteuthis, recorded on video from a manned submersible, was sitting on a hard substrate at a depth of about 1500m, off Hawaii. The arm tips were tucked beneath the web, the mantle bent ventrally so that the animal lay horizontal with the bottom, with the fins held close to the body. [...] On being touched they crawled away or took off from the bottom and swam with 12-30 fin strokes/min" -- all factual description, and very little interpretation of what it may mean for the overall behaviors.

    I've found it to be an interesting reference to be able to look up very specific questions, but I ordered Hanlon & Messenger from Amazon at the same time as Nixon & Young, and I found Hanlon & Messenger to be a much more accessible and interesting read. One major difference is that Hanlon & Messenger is organized with chapters on various topics, like camoflauge, learning, vision, and the like, while Nixon & Young has a chapter for each Family, and a section for each species, and then subsections on things like "life history," "Locomotion," Life History," "Arms and Tentacles," "Learning," "Eyes," "Optic Lobes," "Prey and Prey Capture," "Central Nervous System." Even though I'm sure "Learning" and "Prey and Prey Capture" sound promising for what you've described, they are about 5-10% of the text on Sepia, most of which is subsections of "Central Nervous System" titled things like "Giant-fibre system," "Posterior suboesophageal mass," "Magnocellular lobes," and the ever popular "Lateral basal lobes."
     
  6. jc45

    jc45 GPO Registered

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    Fini,

    There is a book I recently bought, called "Cephalopod Behaviour", which you might like. It does go into physiology, but mainly its a compilation of cephalopod behavioural studies. The book actually references "The Brains and Lives of Cephalopods" as a "definitive account of cephalopod neurobiology" so I was considering buying it.

    However, I don't know how credible "Cephalopod Behaviour" is, since it was written in 1996 or something. I would love to hear a review of it from someone more experienced than I.

    Joey
     
  7. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    That's Hanlon & Messenger, the same one I was talking about, unless there are two books with the same title... I like it a lot as well.
     
  8. jc45

    jc45 GPO Registered

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    I got it and "Cephalopods a World Guide" in a set off amazon.com.

    Joey :read:
     
  9. Fini

    Fini Wonderpus Supporter

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    Nancy turned me onto the Sea Challengers Bookstore. They have it for quite a bit less than Amazon. Maybe you can change your order.

    http://www.seachallengers.com/index.cfm?catID=3&itemID=159
     

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