The olfactory learning capability of the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus was studied. Crickets were deprived of drinking water for 4 days and were individually trained to associate peppermint with water and vanilla with NaCl solution. Their odour preference was tested before and after training by allowing them to choose between peppermint or vanilla sources. The time spent visiting each source served as a measure of odour preference. Crickets exhibited an initial preference for vanilla over peppermint, but preference for the latter increased after only one training session. The olfactory memory formed by a single training session decayed with time but remained for at least 24 h. Memory formed by three training sessions was extremely robust, and did not decay significantly between 1 and 7 days after training. The preference formed was easily altered by reversal training in which vanilla was associated with water and peppermint with saline solution. This study shows that crickets have a highly developed olfactory learning capability characterized by fast acquisition, long retention and easy rewriting of memory.

REFERENCES

Böhm
H.
,
Schildberger
K.
(
1992
).
Brain neurones involved in the control of walking in the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus
.
J. Exp. Biol
166
,
113
–.
Dabnau
J.
,
Tully
T.
(
1998
).
Gene discovery in Drosophila: New insights for learning and memory
.
Annu. Rev. Neurosci
21
,
407
–.
Erber
J.
,
Masuhr
T.
,
Menzel
R.
(
1980
).
Localization of short-term memory in the brain of the bee, Apis mellifera
.
Physiol. Ent
5
,
343
–.
Fan
R. J.
,
Anderson
P.
,
Hansson
B. S.
(
1997
).
Behavioural analysis of olfactory conditioning in the moth Spodoptera littoralis (Boisd.) (Lepidoptera; Noctuidae)
.
J. Exp. Biol
200
,
2969
–.
Fukushi
T.
(
1979
).
Properties of olfactory conditioning in the housefly, Musca domestica
.
J.Insect Physiol
25
,
155
–.
Hammer
M.
(
1993
).
An identified neurone mediates the unconditioned stimulus in associative olfactory learning in honeybees
.
Nature
366
,
59
–.
Hörner
M.
(
1992
).
Wind-evoked escape running of the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus. II. Neurophysiological analysis
.
J. Exp. Biol
171
,
215
–.
Jaffe
K.
,
Baklien
A.
,
Zabala
N. A.
,
Ferrer
A. C.
,
Granier
M.
,
Tablante
A.
,
Ribbi-Jaffe
A.
,
Blau
S.
(
1990
).
Amino acids and memory consolidation in the cricket. I. Changes in the titer of free amino acids in nervous tissue after learning
.
Pharmac. Biochem. Behav
35
,
127
–.
Jaffe
K.
,
Blau
S.
,
Zabala
N.
(
1992
).
Amino acid levels during learning and memory consolidation of an aversive conditioning task in crickets
.
Pharmac. Biochem. Behav
43
,
205
–.
Klein
U.
(
1981
).
Sensilla of the cricket palp
.
Cell Tissue Res
219
,
229
–.
Kohstall-Schnell
D.
,
Gras
H.
(
1994
).
Activity of giant interneurones and other wind-sensitive elements of the terminal ganglion in the walking cricket
.
J. Exp. Biol
193
,
157
–.
Lewis
W. J.
,
Tumlinson
J. H.
(
1988
).
Host detection by chemically mediated associative learning in a parasitic wasp
.
Nature
331
,
257
–.
Matsumoto
Y.
,
Sakai
M.
(
2000
).
Brain control of mating behaviour in the male cricket Gryllus bimaculatus DeGeer: the center for inhibition of copulation actions
.
J. Insect Physiol
46
,
527
–.
Matsumoto
Y.
,
Sakai
M.
(
2000
).
Brain control of mating behaviour in the male cricket Gryllus bimaculatus DeGeer: brain2588neurons responsible for inhibition of copulation actions
.
J. Insect Physiol
46
,
539
–.
Mauelshagen
J.
(
1993
).
Neural correlates of olfactory learning paradigms in an identified neurone in the honeybee brain
.
J. Neurophysiol
69
,
609
–.
Menzel
R.
,
Muller
U.
(
1996
).
Learning and memory in honeybees: From behavior to neural substrates
.
Annu. Rev. Neurosci
19
,
379
–.
Milner
B.
,
Squire
L. R.
,
Kandel
E. R.
(
1998
).
Cognitive neuroscience and the study of memory
.
Neuron
20
,
445
–.
Mizunami
M.
,
Okada
R.
,
Li
Y.
,
Strausfeld
N. J.
(
1998
).
Mushroom bodies of the cockroach: activity and identities of neurons recorded in freely moving animals
.
J. Comp. Neurol
402
,
501
–.
Otte
D.
,
Cade
W.
(
1976
).
On the role of olfaction in sexual and interspecies recognition in crickets (Acheta and Gryllus)
.
Anim. Behav
21
,
1
–.
Simpson
S. J.
,
White
P. R.
(
1990
).
Associative learning and locust feeding: evidence for a ‘learned hunger’ for protein
.
Anim. Behav
40
,
506
–.
Staudacher
E.
,
Schildberger
K.
(
1998
).
Gating of sensory responses of descending brain neurones during walking in crickets
.
J. Exp. Biol
201
,
559
–.
Thorpe
W. H.
(
1939
).
Further studies on pre-imaginal olfactory conditioning in insects
.
Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B
127
,
424
–.
This content is only available via PDF.