Strategies of locomotion composition

Curr Opin Insect Sci. 2019 Dec;36:140-148. doi: 10.1016/j.cois.2019.09.007. Epub 2019 Oct 1.


This review aims to highlight the importance of saccades during locomotion as a strategy to reduce sensory information loss while the subject is moving. Acquiring sensory data from the environment during movement results in a temporal flow of information, as the sensory precept changes with the position of the observer. Accordingly, the movement pattern shapes the sensory flow. Therefore, the requirements of locomotion and sensation have to be balanced in the behaviour of the organism. Insect vision provides deep insight into the interplay between action and perception. Insects can shape their optic flow by reducing their rotational movements to fast and short saccades. This generates prolonged phases of translations which provide depth information. Extensive behavioural and physiological studies on insects show how shaping the optic flow facilitates the coding of motion vision. Indeed the saccadic strategy provides an elegant solution to optimise sensory flow. Complementary studies in other taxa reported similar locomotion strategies emphasising the crucial influence of sensory flow on locomotion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Insecta / physiology*
  • Locomotion*
  • Optic Flow
  • Saccades / physiology
  • Visual Perception*