We showed that great apes can use their self experiences to infer whether the actor can see through the barrier in a false belief task. Two groups of great apes have first experienced different properties of a barrier in reality. One group experienced that the barrier cannot be seen through (normal barrier). The other group experienced that the barrier can be seen through (see-through barrier). The barrier looks untransparent and identical from afar. After this, both groups have watched the same video in which an actor hid behind the barrier while his object of interest is translocated. When the actor tried to retrieve the objects, the apes who have experienced the normal barrier have anticipated the actor's action as if he has a false belief and the other apes who have experienced the see-through barrier anticipated the actor's action as if he has a true belief. This result shows that apes can integrate their own experiences in their understandings about what the actor knows, therefore do not simply use superficial behavioural cues of the actor. Featured in The Atlantic, Smithonian, An introductory article by Alia Martin (Martin A (2019) Belief Representation in Great Apes. Trends Cogn. Sci. 23(12):985-986.)
Kano F., Walker J., Sasaki T., Dora B. (2018) Head-mounted sensors reveal visual attention of free-flying homing pigeons. Journal of Experimental Biology, 221(17), jeb183475.
We developed 'pSensor', that can record free-flying pigeons' head movement (as a proxy for gaze) with IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) and flight trajectories with GPS. Pigeons changed the pattern of head movement according to the visual needs; 1) increased head movement as they established their own navigation routes, 2) decreased head movement when they flew across obvious landmarks (e.g. roads), 3) decreased head movement when they flew with a partner. Thus, it seems that they decreased their head movement when they attended to an object of interest (as if a primate 'fixates'). This study opened up many possibilities in testing visual attention of free-flying birds in ecologically-valid conditions.
Featured in JEB, Cosmos
Kano F., Moore R., Krupenye C., Hirata S., Tomonaga M., Call J. (2018) Human ostensive signals do not enhance gaze following in chimpanzees, but do enhance object-oriented attention. Animal Cognition, 21(5), 715-728.
We tested if chimpanzees respond appropriately to the human experimenter's 'ostensive' cues; the cues that a human adult often uses to indicate her/his intention of informing something useful to others. Previously, human 6-month-olds and domestic dogs followed the experimenter's gaze more often after they saw the ostensive signals, such as eye contact and calling names. We found that chimpanzees did not behave in the same way as human infants and dogs; they followed the gaze equally often after they saw the ostensive signals. However, they, especially those chimpanzees who had kept close relationships with human experimenters since youth, looked the objects (both looked- and non-looked-objects) more often when they saw the ostensive signals vs. the control cues. The results indicate both limitations and potentials in the chimpanzees' ability to understand humans' intention to communicate.
Kano F., Shepherd S.V., Hirata S., Call J. 2018 Primate social attention: Species differences and effects of individual experience in humans, great apes, and macaques. PLOS ONE 13(2), e0193283.
We examined if there are differences among species and individuals in attention to social video stimuli in great apes, monkeys, and humans by testing more than 40 nonhuman primate individuals. Indeed, apes, monkeys, and humans were clearly distinguished from one another. Among great apes, bonobos were distinguished from the other species. We also found that individual experiences such as rearing history (institute-reared, zoo-reared, biolab-reared) affected social attention among chimpanzees. Interestingly, we also found the effect of expertise in human primatologists and non-primatologists; they clearly differ in their viewing patterns for chimpanzees in the videos (an effect of expertise).
Krupenye, C.*, Kano, F.*, Hirata, S., Call, J., Tomasello, M. (2016). Great apes anticipate that other individuals will act according to false beliefs. Science, 354(6308): 110-114. (*shared first-authors, co-correspondence).
We examined if great apes anticipate, with their looks (so-called anticipatory looks), an agent’s action based on the agent’s false beliefs. We followed a seminal infant study (Southgate, Senju, Csibra, 2007) for the general design to test false-belief understanding and also followed Kano & Hirata (2015, Current Biology) to make optimized videos for apes. We created two videos having the same general design (after the seminal infant study) but differing in scenarios. Apes reliably anticipated that the agent would act according to false beliefs in two scenarios.
Featured in NY Times, Science, Nature,Scientific American, New Scientist, BBC, The Guardian, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Business Insider, Salon, Huffington Post, Discovery News, US News & World Report, ABC, CBS, The Christian Science Monitor
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Kano, F., Hirata, S., Deschner, T., Behringer, V., & Call, J. (2016). Nasal temperature drop in response to a playback of conspecific fights in chimpanzees: A thermo-imaging study. Physiology & Behavior, 155, 83-94.
We applied an infrared thermo-imaging to examine the chimpanzee's emotional responses to a playback of conspecific fights. Chimpanzees dropped their nasal-tip temperature in response to the stimuli. A remote measurement of skin temperature is a promising technique in this field.
Kano F, Hirata S (2015) Great Apes Make Anticipatory Looks Based on Long-Term Memory of Single Events. Current Biology 25(19): 2513-2517.
We used a novel eye-tracking task to study great apes’ long-term memory shaped through single experiences. We found that, when watching the same video again with a 24-hr delay, great apes make anticipatory looks to the critical, emotional events based on where-what information.
Featured in The New York Times, New Scientists, The Gurdian, etc.
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Kano F, Hirata S, Call J (2015) Social Attention in the Two Species of Pan: Bonobos Make More Eye Contact than Chimpanzees. PLoS ONE 10(6): e0129684. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0129684
Kano, F., & Call, J. (2014). Great apes make goal-directed action prediction by eye movements, Psychological Science, 25(9): 1691-1698.
I tested if great apes (chimps, bonobos, orangs), like human adults and infants, predict reaching actions by eye movements. Apes were familiarized to movie clips of a human hand reaching to grasp one of two objects. Then object locations were swapped, and the hand made an incomplete reach between the objects. In a control condition, a mechanical claw performed the same action. Apes predictively looked at the familiarized goal object rather than the familiarized location when viewing the hand action. However, they did make no prediction when viewing the claw action.
Kano, F., & Call, J. (2014). Cross-species variation of gaze following and conspecific preference among great apes, human infants and adults. Animal Behaviour 91: 137-150..
Kano, F., & Tomonaga, M. Head-Mounted Eye Tracking of a Chimpanzee under Naturalistic Conditions. PLoS ONE, 8(3), e59785, 2013
Media article (http://www.insidescience.org/content/chimps-point-view/978)
|Pan, the chimpanzee, wearing the eye-tracker|
Kano, F., Call, J., & Tomonaga, M. Face and eyescanning in gorillas, orangutans, and humans: unique eye-viewing patterns inhumans among hominids. Journal of Comparative Psychology, 126(4), 388-398.
|Spontaneous scanning of faces by orangutan, gorilla, and human participants.|
Kano, F., Hirata, S., Call, J., & Tomonaga, M. Thevisual strategy specific to humans among hominids: A study using gap-overlapparadigm. Vision Research. 51,2348-2355, 2011
|Gap-overlap task revealed the similarities and differences of basic eye-movement properties between great apes and humans|
Kano, F., & Tomonaga, M. Species difference in thetiming of gaze movement between chimpanzees and humans. Animal Cognition.14(6),879-892, 2011
|Chimpanzees scanned visual scenes more quickly and more widely than humans.|
Kano, F., & Tomonaga, M. Perceptual mechanismunderlying gaze guidance in chimpanzees and humans. Animal Cognition, 14(3),377-386, 2011.
|Chimpanzees were similar to humans in their pattern of viewing complex and abstract scenes.|
Kano, F., Tanaka, M., & Tomonaga, M. Attention toemotional scenes including whole-body expressions in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). Journal of ComparativePsychology, 124(3), 287-294, 2011.
|Among many video contents, chimpanzees viewed fighting scenes most strongly.|
Kano, F., & Tomonaga, M. Face scanning in chimpanzeesand humans: continuity and discontinuity. Animal Behaviour, 79, 227-235, 2010.
|Humans extensively viewed eyes. Chimpanzees also viewed eyes but viewed mouth relatively more often.|
|Humans viewed eyes when presented with any facial expressions, while chimpanzees viewed mouth expressions more often.|
Hattori, Y., Kano, F., & Tomonaga, M. Differentialsensitivity to conspecific and allospecific cues in chimpanzees and humans: Acomparative eye-tracking study. Biology Letters, 6(5), 610-613, 2010.
|Chimpanzees followed only chimpanzee gaze, while human adults followed both chimpanzee and human gaze.|
Kano, F., & Tomonaga, M. How chimpanzees look atpictures: a comparative eye-tracking study. Proceedings of the Royal Society B:Biological Sciences, 276(1664), 1949-1955, 2009.
|A chimpanzee on the eye-tracking setting.|
|Typical scanpaths by chimpanzees and humans.|
Kano, F., Tanaka, M., & Tomonaga, M. Enhancedrecognition of emotional stimuli in the chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes). AnimalCognition, 11(3), 517-524, 2008.
|A chimpanzee recognized the emotional scene better in a memory task.|
|A chimpanzee on the touch-panel setting.|