The Royal Society

Supplementary material from "Response to geometrical visual illusions in non-human animals: a meta-analysis"

Posted on 2024-05-14 - 09:46
Visual illusions have been studied in many non-human species, spanning a wide range of biological and methodological variables. While early reviews have proved useful in providing an overview of the field, they have not been accompanied by a quantitative analysis to systematically evaluate the contribution of biological and methodological moderators on the proportion of illusory choice. In the current meta-analytical study, we confirm that geometrical visual illusion perception is a general phenomenon among non-human animals. Additionally, we found that studies testing birds report stronger illusion perception compared to other classes, as do those on animals with lateral-positioned eyes compared to animals with face-forwarding eyes. In terms of methodological choices, we found a positive correlation between the number of trials during training or testing and the effect sizes while studies with larger samples report smaller effect sizes. Despite studies which trained animals with artificial stimuli showed larger effect sizes compared with those using spontaneous testing with naturalistic stimuli, like food, we found more recent studies prefer spontaneous choice over training. We discuss the challenges and bottlenecks in this area of study which, if addressed, could lead to more successful advances in the future.


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Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences


Oxána Bánszegi
Marcos F. Rosetti
Uriel J. Olivares
Péter Szenczi
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