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Flies have personality


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Today is one of those hot days when flies are especially annoying. Watching one fly after another behave exactly the same, the question came to me if all their behavior is instinctively programmed or rather if every fly has different personality traits (to the degree such a simple creature can have a personality).

 

I googled the question and found this interesting article:

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/11/13/1211988109.full.pdf

 

If the terminology in the article is above your head (it's well above mine) this is a simpler explanation of the same study:

http://www.realclearscience.com/journal_club/2012/11/17/do_fruit_flies_have_free_will_106407.html

 

Basically the conclusion of the article is that every fly, even if they are genetically identical, has a different personality, that is mostly expressed in the way they react to light.

 

Of course evolution has a hard time explaining that useless waste of brain. But it makes perfect sense that a Creator who loves variety would create flies with individual personalities, doesn't it?

 

 

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3 hours ago, carlos said:

Basically the conclusion of the article is that every fly, even if they are genetically identical, has a different personality, that is mostly expressed in the way they react to light.

I would imagine their personality is developed by their environment, flies that were raised in the city are more likely to wipe their feet when they come into your house than flies that were raised in a barn. :popcorn:

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I quite like the contraption used for the experiment: it was unceremoniously vacuumed, taken back to its original position and forced to go through the maze again. And again. And again. Such was the fate of some 17,600 flies.

 

And I don't think that makes the "oddball" fly odd at all.  Wouldn't you try to escape this contraption 100% of the time?  Light means out for this guy.

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2 hours ago, Your Brother said:

Hmmm note to self, when Carlos comes to visit he is easily entertained :uhhuh:.

Just give him a fly swatter. He'll enjoy hours of fun.

And so will you,.. watching. :popcorn:

 

No joke....years ago my brother actually befriended a fly.

I went to his house and He told me he had a pet fly, I thought he was kidding. He held up his hand and the fly landed on his finger and he could even pet it. It would fly away and come back. My sister-in law was washing dishes that night and it landed next to her and she smashed it. They had a big fight over it. I'll never forget it. It's the only fly I ever felt sorry for. :crying:


Edited by Pjdriver
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4 hours ago, carlos said:

Today is one of those hot days when flies are especially annoying. Watching one fly after another behave exactly the same, the question came to me if all their behavior is instinctively programmed or rather if every fly has different personality traits (to the degree such a simple creature can have a personality).

 

I googled the question and found this interesting article:

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/11/13/1211988109.full.pdf

 

If the terminology in the article is above your head (it's well above mine) this is a simpler explanation of the same study:

http://www.realclearscience.com/journal_club/2012/11/17/do_fruit_flies_have_free_will_106407.html

 

Basically the conclusion of the article is that every fly, even if they are genetically identical, has a different personality, that is mostly expressed in the way they react to light.

 

Of course evolution has a hard time explaining that useless waste of brain. But it makes perfect sense that a Creator who loves variety would create flies with individual personalities, doesn't it?

 

 

I have tried to read the first article (top one) but my brain cells went into overheating status and had to press emergency exit button !

When you visit Australia please drop in to my house, I have a lot encyclopedias to entertain you >:D<

Wouldn't be easier to ask the fly personally ?  :lol1:  

 

 

Please take this on the light side !

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This is not good. One does not, um, do in a thing with personality easily. This forces me to go from the smash routine, (messy) then the Windex routine, (not so messy, but the same fate as the smash routine, for the fly anyway) to the butterfly net routine. Catch and release. A bit more time consuming. But the creature, apparently with personality manages to survive.

I think flies were created to consume nasty things. Their babies have the job. Maggots. On to something a little less gruesome...

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  • 8 months later...

Might not meant they have personality, as from what I have read they lack self awareness or consciousness, being drone like. They may have alternations in behaviour, but ultimately their "choices" revolves around their drone like purposes in life.  As opposed to doing something out of "fulfilment". After all they will keep bashing themselves into a window till they drop down dead, rather than stopping to think about what they are doing and how it is affecting them.

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3 hours ago, EccentricM said:

 After all they will keep bashing themselves into a window till they drop down dead, rather than stopping to think about what they are doing and how it is affecting them.

 

So will some humans.  That doesn't negate those people from having personality.  LOL

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9 hours ago, EccentricM said:

Might not meant they have personality, as from what I have read they lack self awareness or consciousness, being drone like. They may have alternations in behaviour, but ultimately their "choices" revolves around their drone like purposes in life.  As opposed to doing something out of "fulfilment". After all they will keep bashing themselves into a window till they drop down dead, rather than stopping to think about what they are doing and how it is affecting them.

Yes, you are right. I didn't mean flies have a rich personality, interesting discussions, enjoy art and all of that. :lol: Rather, my questions was if they all behave identically, and it seems they do not. Of course their choices are very limited. Some love bright lights while others prefer less brightness. Some prefer their poo fresh while others like it medium rare. :lol:

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2 hours ago, carlos said:

Yes, you are right. I didn't mean flies have a rich personality, interesting discussions, enjoy art and all of that. :lol: Rather, my questions was if they all behave identically, and it seems they do not. Of course their choices are very limited. Some love bright lights while others prefer less brightness. Some prefer their poo fresh while others like it medium rare. :lol:

Carlos, you forgot rubbish bins, what a variety there   :lol1:

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