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Author (up) Gabor, V.; Gerken, M. url  doi
  Title Shetland ponies (Equus caballus) show quantity discrimination in a matching-to-sample design Type Journal Article
  Year 2014 Publication Animal Cognition Abbreviated Journal Anim. Cogn.  
  Volume 17 Issue 6 Pages 1233-1243  
  Abstract Numerical competence is one of the aspects of animal cognition with a long history of research interest, but few results are available for the horse. In the present study, we investigated the ability of three Shetland ponies to discriminate between different quantities of geometric symbols presented on a computer screen in a matching-to-sample arrangement. In Experiment 1, the ponies had to relate two similar quantities to another, paired in contrasts (1 vs. 2, 3 vs. 4 and 4 vs. 5) of the same stimulus (dot). Specific pairs of quantities (all differing by one) of up to five different geometrical symbols were displayed in Experiment 2. In each session, both quantities (more and less) were used as sample in such a way that each of the two quantities presented in one test served as positive and as negative stimulus, respectively. The three Shetland ponies were able to discriminate between the given quantities of dots by showing more than 80 % correct responses in two consecutive sessions. Only one of the ponies distinguished different shapes of geometric symbols at a level of 4 versus 5 items. The results show that all ponies were capable of visual quantity discrimination in the present matching-to-sample design, but task solving seemed more difficult when quantities were composed of heterogeneous stimuli. The present results confirm our hypothesis that the ponies based their decision on the matching concept of sameness and were not biased by a spontaneous preference for higher quantities.  
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  Series Volume Series Issue Edition  
  ISSN 1435-9456 ISBN Medium  
  Area Expedition Conference  
  Notes Approved no  
  Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Gabor2014 Serial 6174  
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