Virtual stimuli represent an increasingly popular tool in the study of animal behaviour. Modern techniques have the potential to simplify and improve traditional experiments using live stimuli. However, the increasing availability of diverse techniques is associated with problems and limitations. Although many new methods have been developed, their validation remains largely untested. In the present study, we therefore performed two experiments to test whether 2-D animations of predators and conspecifics elicit biologically appropriate behavioural responses in male rainbow kribs, Pelvicachromis pulcher. Individual responses towards a sympatric natural fish predator, Parachanna obscura, were tested using live predators and still colour photographs, animated using PowerPoint

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Keywords activity, aggression, boldness, computer animation, Parachanna obscura, virtual stimulus
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Journal Ethology
Scherer, U. (Ulrike), Godin, J.-G.J, & Schuett, W. (Wiebke). (2017). Validation of 2D-animated pictures as an investigative tool in the behavioural sciences: A case study with a West African cichlid fish, Pelvicachromis pulcher. Ethology, 123(8), 560–570. doi:10.1111/eth.12630