homing behavior


Summary: Instinctual patterns of activity related to a specific area including ability of certain animals to return to a given place when displaced from it, often over great distances using navigational clues such as those used in migration (ANIMAL MIGRATION).

Top Publications

  1. Fieberg J. Kernel density estimators of home range: smoothing and the autocorrelation red herring. Ecology. 2007;88:1059-66 pubmed
    ..Further, KDEs with typical data-based methods of choosing smoothing parameters should provide competitive estimates of space use for fixed study periods unless autocorrelation substantially alters the optimal level of smoothing. ..
  2. Steck K, Hansson B, Knaden M. Desert ants benefit from combining visual and olfactory landmarks. J Exp Biol. 2011;214:1307-12 pubmed publisher
    ..Apparently, C. fortis benefit from combining their visual and olfactory navigational tools, because the bimodal sensory input accelerates the acquisition of landmark information. ..
  3. Biro D, Sumpter D, Meade J, Guilford T. From compromise to leadership in pigeon homing. Curr Biol. 2006;16:2123-8 pubmed
    ..In the context of mass migration of birds and other animals, our results imply that simple self-organizing rules can produce behaviors that improve accuracy in decision-making and thus benefit individuals traveling in groups ...
  4. Cheung A, Zhang S, Stricker C, Srinivasan M. Animal navigation: the difficulty of moving in a straight line. Biol Cybern. 2007;97:47-61 pubmed
    ..Some specific examples are discussed. An important corollary arising from the analysis of compassless navigation is that the maximum expected displacement represents a robust measure of the straightness of a path. ..
  5. Nørgaard T, Nilsson D, Henschel J, Garm A, Wehner R. Vision in the nocturnal wandering spider Leucorchestris arenicola (Araneae: Sparassidae). J Exp Biol. 2008;211:816-23 pubmed publisher
    ..However, by summation in space and time, the spiders can rescue enough vision to detect coarse landscape structures. We show that L. arenicola spiders are likely to be using temporal summation to navigate at night. ..
  6. Read M, Grigg G, Irwin S, Shanahan D, Franklin C. Satellite tracking reveals long distance coastal travel and homing by translocated estuarine crocodiles, Crocodylus porosus. PLoS ONE. 2007;2:e949 pubmed
    ..These long journeys included impressive daily movements of 10-30 km, often consecutively...
  7. Freeman R, Mann R, Guilford T, Biro D. Group decisions and individual differences: route fidelity predicts flight leadership in homing pigeons (Columba livia). Biol Lett. 2011;7:63-6 pubmed publisher
    ..We discuss how this fidelity may relate to the leadership phenomenon, and propose that leadership may emerge from the interplay between individual route confidence and the dynamics of paired flight...
  8. Campioni L, Delgado M, Lourenço R, Bastianelli G, Fernández N, Penteriani V. Individual and spatio-temporal variations in the home range behaviour of a long-lived, territorial species. Oecologia. 2013;172:371-85 pubmed publisher
    ..Because of the plurality of behavioural and ecological processes simultaneously involved in home range behaviour, we claim that an integrative approach is required for adequate investigation of its temporal and spatial variation...
  9. Johnson R, Evans J, Robinson G, Berenbaum M. Changes in transcript abundance relating to colony collapse disorder in honey bees (Apis mellifera). Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009;106:14790-5 pubmed publisher
    ..Ribosomal fragment abundance and presence of multiple viruses may prove to be useful diagnostic markers for colonies afflicted with CCD. ..

More Information


  1. Basten K, Mallot H. Simulated visual homing in desert ant natural environments: efficiency of skyline cues. Biol Cybern. 2010;102:413-25 pubmed publisher
    ..This supports the assumption of skyline coding in visual homing of desert ants and allows novel approaches to technical outdoor navigation. ..
  2. Reid S, Narendra A, Hemmi J, Zeil J. Polarised skylight and the landmark panorama provide night-active bull ants with compass information during route following. J Exp Biol. 2011;214:363-70 pubmed publisher
    ..Interestingly, other parts of the surrounding panorama also influence foraging speed and accuracy, suggesting that they too play a role in navigation...
  3. Reynolds B, Powers S, Bishop M. Application of acoustic telemetry to assess residency and movements of rockfish and lingcod at created and natural habitats in Prince William Sound. PLoS ONE. 2010;5:e12130 pubmed publisher
    ..Our results suggest the potential for artificial reefs to provide rockfish habitat in the event of disturbances to natural habitat. ..
  4. Philippides A, Baddeley B, Cheng K, Graham P. How might ants use panoramic views for route navigation?. J Exp Biol. 2011;214:445-51 pubmed publisher
  5. Ali F, Meier R. Primate home range and GRIN2A, a receptor gene involved in neuronal plasticity: implications for the evolution of spatial memory. Genes Brain Behav. 2009;8:435-41 pubmed publisher
  6. Gagliardo A, Ioalè P, Savini M, Wild M. Navigational abilities of adult and experienced homing pigeons deprived of olfactory or trigeminally mediated magnetic information. J Exp Biol. 2009;212:3119-24 pubmed publisher
    ..Our data show that even in trained adult pigeons, olfactory cues are needed for homing from unfamiliar locations and that the lack of magnetic information does not affect navigational abilities of experienced adult homing pigeons. ..
  7. Gagliardo A, Filannino C, Ioalè P, Pecchia T, Wikelski M, Vallortigara G. Olfactory lateralization in homing pigeons: a GPS study on birds released with unilateral olfactory inputs. J Exp Biol. 2011;214:593-8 pubmed publisher
    ..g. during flights around a stopover site. These data suggest a more important involvement of the right olfactory system in processing the olfactory information needed for the operation of the navigational map...
  8. van Beest F, Rivrud I, Loe L, Milner J, Mysterud A. What determines variation in home range size across spatiotemporal scales in a large browsing herbivore?. J Anim Ecol. 2011;80:771-85 pubmed publisher
  9. Hoenner X, Whiting S, Hindell M, McMahon C. Enhancing the use of Argos satellite data for home range and long distance migration studies of marine animals. PLoS ONE. 2012;7:e40713 pubmed publisher
  10. Monsarrat S, Benhamou S, Sarrazin F, Bessa Gomes C, Bouten W, Duriez O. How predictability of feeding patches affects home range and foraging habitat selection in avian social scavengers?. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e53077 pubmed publisher
    ..Light feeding stations are interesting tools for managing food resources, but don't prevent vultures to feed at other places with possibly high risk of intoxication (poison). ..
  11. Getz W, Fortmann Roe S, Cross P, Lyons A, Ryan S, Wilmers C. LoCoH: nonparameteric kernel methods for constructing home ranges and utilization distributions. PLoS ONE. 2007;2:e207 pubmed
    ..g., rocky outcrops). We also demonstrate that a-LoCoH is generally superior to k- and r-LoCoH (with software for all three methods available at http://locoh.cnr.berkeley.edu). ..
  12. Blake S, Deem S, Strindberg S, Maisels F, Momont L, Isia I, et al. Roadless wilderness area determines forest elephant movements in the Congo Basin. PLoS ONE. 2008;3:e3546 pubmed publisher
    ..If the current road development trajectory continues, forest wildernesses and the forest elephants they contain will collapse...
  13. Börger L, Dalziel B, Fryxell J. Are there general mechanisms of animal home range behaviour? A review and prospects for future research. Ecol Lett. 2008;11:637-50 pubmed publisher
    ..Recent methodological and theoretical advances may soon lead to a unified approach, however, conceptually unifying our understanding of linkages among home range behaviour and ecological or evolutionary processes. ..
  14. Voss J, Keary N, Bischof H. The use of the geomagnetic field for short distance orientation in zebra finches. Neuroreport. 2007;18:1053-7 pubmed
    ..By using a conditioning technique in a standard laboratory animal, our experiments will provide an ideal basis for the search for the physiological mechanisms of magnetic field perception. ..
  15. Costa S, Andrade R, Carneiro L, Gonçalves E, Kotrschal K, Oliveira R. Sex differences in the dorsolateral telencephalon correlate with home range size in blenniid fish. Brain Behav Evol. 2011;77:55-64 pubmed publisher
    ..These results suggest that the DLv is involved in spatial abilities in blenniid fish and that sexual selection may be promoting this divergence as already described for mammals and birds. ..
  16. Pahl M, Zhu H, Tautz J, Zhang S. Large scale homing in honeybees. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e19669 pubmed publisher
    ..Our findings suggest that such large scale homing is facilitated by global landmarks acting as beacons, and possibly the entire skyline panorama. ..
  17. Benadi G, Fichtel C, Kappeler P. Intergroup relations and home range use in Verreaux's sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi). Am J Primatol. 2008;70:956-65 pubmed publisher
  18. Lenoir A, Depickère S, Devers S, Christides J, Detrain C. Hydrocarbons in the ant Lasius niger: from the cuticle to the nest and home range marking. J Chem Ecol. 2009;35:913-21 pubmed publisher
    ..These results suggest that the CHCs chemical profiles used by ants in colony recognition are much more complex than a single template: ants have to learn and memorize odors that vary depending on their context of perception. ..
  19. Henry M, Béguin M, Requier F, Rollin O, Odoux J, Aupinel P, et al. A common pesticide decreases foraging success and survival in honey bees. Science. 2012;336:348-50 pubmed publisher
    ..These experiments offer new insights into the consequences of common neonicotinoid pesticides used worldwide. ..
  20. Teichroeb J, Sicotte P. Test of the ecological-constraints model on ursine colobus monkeys (Colobus vellerosus) in Ghana. Am J Primatol. 2009;71:49-59 pubmed publisher
    ..How costly this increased energy expenditure is for individuals in larger groups remains to be determined...
  21. Potts J, Harris S, Giuggioli L. Territorial dynamics and stable home range formation for central place foragers. PLoS ONE. 2012;7:e34033 pubmed publisher
    ..Comparisons are made with previous theoretical work modelling central place foragers with conspecific avoidance. Some insights into the mechanisms behind allometric scaling laws of animal space use are also given. ..
  22. Cruse H, Hübner D. Selforganizing memory: active learning of landmarks used for navigation. Biol Cybern. 2008;99:219-36 pubmed publisher
    ..Finally, we tested to what extent learning of the weights is affected by noisy input given to the sensor data. The architecture proposed is discussed to have some at least superficial similarity to the mushroom bodies of insects. ..
  23. Cheng K, Middleton E, Wehner R. Vector-based and landmark-guided navigation in desert ants of the same species inhabiting landmark-free and landmark-rich environments. J Exp Biol. 2012;215:3169-74 pubmed publisher
  24. Thorup K, Holland R. The bird GPS - long-range navigation in migrants. J Exp Biol. 2009;212:3597-604 pubmed publisher
  25. Fleissner G, Stahl B, Thalau P, Falkenberg G, Fleissner G. A novel concept of Fe-mineral-based magnetoreception: histological and physicochemical data from the upper beak of homing pigeons. Naturwissenschaften. 2007;94:631-42 pubmed
    ..e., amplitude and direction of the local magnetic field, irrespective of the animal's posture or movement and photoreception...
  26. Revilla E, Wiegand T. Individual movement behavior, matrix heterogeneity, and the dynamics of spatially structured populations. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008;105:19120-5 pubmed publisher
  27. Postlethwaite C, Walker M. A geometric model for initial orientation errors in pigeon navigation. J Theor Biol. 2011;269:273-9 pubmed publisher
  28. Luschi P, Benhamou S, Girard C, Ciccione S, Roos D, Sudre J, et al. Marine turtles use geomagnetic cues during open-sea homing. Curr Biol. 2007;17:126-33 pubmed
    ..These findings represent the first field evidence for the involvement of geomagnetic cues in sea-turtle navigation. ..
  29. Grueter C, Li D, Ren B, Wei F. Choice of analytical method can have dramatic effects on primate home range estimates. Primates. 2009;50:81-4 pubmed publisher
  30. Wartmann F, Purves R, van Schaik C. Modelling ranging behaviour of female orang-utans: a case study in Tuanan, Central Kalimantan, Indonesia. Primates. 2010;51:119-30 pubmed publisher
    ..A significant effect of fruit availability on day path length was found. Sexually active females covered longer distances per day and may also temporarily expand their ranges. ..
  31. Collett M, Collett T. The learning and maintenance of local vectors in desert ant navigation. J Exp Biol. 2009;212:895-900 pubmed publisher
    ..The vectors improved again once the missing bushes were replaced by artificial landmarks. The fragility of local vector memories may permit an ant the flexibility to adapt its route to fluctuations in the distribution of its resources. ..
  32. Jorge P, Marques A, Phillips J. Activational rather than navigational effects of odors on homing of young pigeons. Curr Biol. 2009;19:650-4 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings show that odors, rather than providing navigational information, activate a nonolfactory path integration system. ..
  33. Beasley J, Beatty W, Olson Z, Rhodes O. A genetic analysis of the Virginia opossum mating system: evidence of multiple paternity in a highly fragmented landscape. J Hered. 2010;101:368-73 pubmed publisher
  34. Sommer S, von Beeren C, Wehner R. Multiroute memories in desert ants. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008;105:317-22 pubmed
  35. Lehmann M, Funston P, Owen C, Slotow R. Home range utilisation and territorial behaviour of lions (Panthera leo) on Karongwe Game Reserve, South Africa. PLoS ONE. 2008;3:e3998 pubmed publisher
  36. Boyle S, Lourenço W, da Silva L, Smith A. Home range estimates vary with sample size and methods. Folia Primatol (Basel). 2009;80:33-42 pubmed publisher
    ..It is important to consider the various home range methods, as the appropriate method may depend on sample size and the species' behavioral ecology. ..
  37. Bordes F, Morand S, Kelt D, Van Vuren D. Home range and parasite diversity in mammals. Am Nat. 2009;173:467-74 pubmed publisher
    ..We also show that home range size is negatively correlated with host density in mammals after correcting both variables for host body mass. We discuss these results from an epidemiological perspective. ..
  38. Dias M, Granadeiro J, Phillips R, Alonso H, Catry P. Breaking the routine: individual Cory's shearwaters shift winter destinations between hemispheres and across ocean basins. Proc Biol Sci. 2011;278:1786-93 pubmed publisher
  39. Alfred R, Ahmad A, Payne J, Williams C, Ambu L, How P, et al. Home range and ranging behaviour of Bornean elephant (Elephas maximus borneensis) females. PLoS ONE. 2012;7:e31400 pubmed publisher
    ..Finally, in fragmented habitat human and elephant conflict occurrences were likely to be higher, due to increased movement bringing elephants into contact more often with humans. ..
  40. Graham P, Cheng K. Ants use the panoramic skyline as a visual cue during navigation. Curr Biol. 2009;19:R935-7 pubmed publisher
  41. Muller M, Wehner R. Wind and sky as compass cues in desert ant navigation. Naturwissenschaften. 2007;94:589-94 pubmed
    ..The intermediate courses shift the more towards the wind compass course, the higher the elevation of the sun is in the sky. ..
  42. Cheng K, Narendra A, Sommer S, Wehner R. Traveling in clutter: navigation in the Central Australian desert ant Melophorus bagoti. Behav Processes. 2009;80:261-8 pubmed publisher
    ..Functional predictions concerning the acquisition, retention, and integration of memories of distances and of landmarks are also reviewed, illuminating the behavioral ecology of spatial cognition. ..
  43. Collett M. How navigational guidance systems are combined in a desert ant. Curr Biol. 2012;22:927-32 pubmed publisher
    ..These results help show how an insect's relatively simple decision-making can produce navigation that is reliable and efficient and that also adapts to changing demands. ..
  44. Biro D, Freeman R, Meade J, Roberts S, Guilford T. Pigeons combine compass and landmark guidance in familiar route navigation. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007;104:7471-6 pubmed
    ..Thus, we demonstrate conditions under which compass orientation and landmark guidance must be combined into a system of simultaneous or oscillating dual control...
  45. Benhamou S. Dynamic approach to space and habitat use based on biased random bridges. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e14592 pubmed publisher
    ..Relying on simplified BRBs proves to be the most reliable and easily usable way to estimate UDs from serially correlated relocations and raw activity information. ..
  46. Collett T, Graham P, Harris R. Novel landmark-guided routes in ants. J Exp Biol. 2007;210:2025-32 pubmed
  47. Cheung A, Vickerstaff R. Finding the way with a noisy brain. PLoS Comput Biol. 2010;6:e1000992 pubmed publisher
    ..Indeed, noise-tolerance may be an important functional constraint on the evolution of neuroarchitectural plans in the animal kingdom. ..
  48. Kie J, Matthiopoulos J, Fieberg J, Powell R, Cagnacci F, Mitchell M, et al. The home-range concept: are traditional estimators still relevant with modern telemetry technology?. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2010;365:2221-31 pubmed publisher
  49. Schwarz S, Narendra A, Zeil J. The properties of the visual system in the Australian desert ant Melophorus bagoti. Arthropod Struct Dev. 2011;40:128-34 pubmed publisher
    ..3°. With a ??(rh)/?? ratio of much less than 2, the eyes undersample the visual scene but provide high contrast, and surprising detail of the landmark panorama that has been shown to be used for navigation. ..
  50. Narendra A. Homing strategies of the Australian desert ant Melophorus bagoti. II. Interaction of the path integrator with visual cue information. J Exp Biol. 2007;210:1804-12 pubmed
    ..The dominance of distant cues, the importance of familiar context and the interaction between different navigation strategies are discussed here. ..
  51. Vickerstaff R, Merkle T. Path integration mediated systematic search: a Bayesian model. J Theor Biol. 2012;307:1-19 pubmed publisher
    ..The searches produced by it are also arguably the most similar in appearance to the ant's searches. ..
  52. Stopher K, Walling C, Morris A, Guinness F, Clutton Brock T, Pemberton J, et al. Shared spatial effects on quantitative genetic parameters: accounting for spatial autocorrelation and home range overlap reduces estimates of heritability in wild red deer. Evolution. 2012;66:2411-26 pubmed publisher
  53. Bowen B, Karl S. Population genetics and phylogeography of sea turtles. Mol Ecol. 2007;16:4886-907 pubmed
    ..Genetic studies have advanced our understanding of marine turtle biology and evolution, but significant gaps persist and provide challenges for the next generation of sea turtle geneticists. ..