Optimists or pessimists? It depends on the experiences they have made. We are not talking about human beings but about fish. Because according to a new study even the fish have their own vision of things.
|Experiences influence the lifestyle of the fish. Not
unlike what happens to human beings.
Shy or bold?
A group of researchers from the University of Liverpool, in Great Britain, observed a group of trouts (Oncorhynchus mykiss) in the laboratory. Some, from the beginning, have shown themselves to be very open and bold about new food. Others, on the other hand, are more timid and resistant to new developments.
The two types were then compared in life situations, such as a fight. And they realized that when the bolds lost they became fearful and suspicious, like the more timid ones. According to Lynne Sneddon, who led the research, this depends on the fact that those who lose a battle and are therefore more psychologically tested, have an increase in the level of the stress hormone, cortisol.
Winners and losers
But not only do brave fish become shy after a failure, even those that were backward were bold after a victory.
Surprisingly, however, the timid trout that had lost a fight no longer feared to taste strange foods. Although it was not a real act of trust, but a forced path. According to Sneddon, in fact, to drive this new attitude would be the "strategy of the desperate". Knowing that he is the weakest, the losing fish knows that to eat he will have to grab food quickly, even the one that does not convince him. Obtaining with cunning what he cannot have by force.
Men and fish
The results of the experiment, according to scholars, make the fish somewhat similar to humans. Life experiences - especially the most important ones - change the way we see things. A behavior that is much more evident when big events occur. As for example for the Vietnam war veterans who, due to post-traumatic stress, returned home completely changed compared to when they left.
(News updated November 22, 2006)