Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Many species of flying insects detect and chase prey or conspecifics within a visually cluttered surround, e.g. for predation, territorial or mating behavior. We modeled such detection and pursuit for small moving targets, and tested it within a closed-loop, virtual reality flight arena. Our model is inspired directly by electrophysiological recordings from 'small target motion detector' (STMD) neurons in the insect brain that are likely to underlie this behavioral task. The front-end uses a variant of a biologically inspired 'elementary' small target motion detector (ESTMD), elaborated to detect targets in natural scenes of both contrast polarities (i.e. both dark and light targets). We also include an additional model for the recently identified physiological 'facilitation' mechanism believed to form the basis for selective attention in insect STMDs, and quantify the improvement this provides for pursuit success and target discriminability over a range of target contrasts.

Original publication




Conference paper

Publication Date