Title of Poster or Paper
Dr. Deirdre Yeater and Dr. Dawn Melzer
College and Major available
4-24-2019 2:00 PM
4-24-2019 5:00 PM
Assessing creativity in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in a controlled setting
Cetaceans, like bottlenose dolphins, are well known for their complex and highly developed cognitive capacities. Earlier research demonstrated these dolphin’s abilities to perform creative novel behaviors but the degree of creativity for the behaviors produced was not assessed. For this study, we adapted tests of human creativity to investigate creativity in 12 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in managed care. The data were analyzed for fluency of behavioral responses. After 4 test sessions, the results indicated that the dolphins performed different behaviors for 45.6% of trials. On average, the dolphins performed 18.88 different behaviors whether they received reinforcement or not during a session and tended to perform more behaviors in a row before repeating behaviors as sessions progressed. Taken together, these results suggest that dolphins seem to show fluency in their creativity when under stimulus control.