Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

At Mind Matters News: When a tiny brain is actually an advantage


Small size — which includes having a small brain — hones the ogre gnat’s remarkable neurological abilities:

The researchers attribute the fly’s ability to adjust its trajectory so rapidly to its small size, which allows signals to travel rapidly from eye to brain to flight muscles. Future research will include testing what information small animals can gain about their target before they take off and how they know what to attack. ScienceDaily (February 16, 2022) The paper is open access.

So small size — which includes having a small brain — is actually an asset to the ogre gnat’s remarkable neurological abilities, not a liability.

News, “When a tiny brain is actually an advantage” at Mind Matters News

The gnat ogre is seen here at work:

Takehome: Natural algorithms may account for insect skills, enabling research that transforms a frustrating mystery into a fruitful one by finding the genetic basis for a specific algorithm as opposed to vague talk of “instinct.”

You may also wish to read: How do insects use their very small brains to think clearly? How do they engage in complex behaviour with only 100,000 to a million neurons? Researchers are finding that insects have a number of strategies for making the most of comparatively few neurons to enable complex behavior. (Denyse O’Leary)


Leave a Reply