Time-place learning in the cichlid angelfish, Pterophyllum scalare

Behav Processes. 2005 Sep 30;70(2):177-81. doi: 10.1016/j.beproc.2005.02.021. Epub 2005 Mar 16.


The ability of the cichlid angelfish, Pterophyllum scalare, to associate time and place to locate food, provided twice a day in two different places, was tested. Food was delivered daily in one corner of the tank in the morning and in the diagonally opposite corner in the afternoon, for a 3-week period, and the distribution of the fish in the tank was noted prior to and during feeding time. The results indicate that, in a fairly uniform environment and in the absence of external time cues, angelfish can discriminate and associate time and place to obtain a food reward. It is suggested that they do so by means of an endogenous timing mechanism.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cichlids*
  • Discrimination Learning*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Time Perception*
  • Visual Perception