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cerebral cortex

I understand that a mammal brain with a relatively smooth cerebral cortex would have a smaller surface area compared to a mammal brain with many sulci. This job examines the effect on the habits of these mammals in respect of feeding, breeding etc.

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CEREBRAL CORTEX
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Question: I understand that a mammal brain with a relatively smooth cerebral cortex would have a smaller surface area compared to a mammal brain with many sulci but does this have an effect on the habits of these mammals in respect of feeding, breeding etc.

Response: This is a very interesting question. Scientists may develop correlations between anatomy and behaviour, but determining causation is another matter altogether. This is much harder, since when we get into behaviour, we also enter the area of psychology (or in this case, animal psychology) which is a very difficult field to study. In other words, you're asking, "What came first, the chicken or the egg?" Difficult to answer. Nevertheless, I hope that the following will shed light on the topic as well as give you further leads to investigate.

The following comes from a site at McGill University that discusses evolution and the human brain (http://www.thebrain.mcgill.ca).

Here's a connection between the surface of the cortex and hunting behaviour.

"This expansion of the surface of the neocortex (also known as the isocortex) is more apparent in predatory mammals than in herbivorous ones. Catching prey may be difficult, but a successful hunt provides a far more nutritious meal than any ...

Solution Summary

Mammals' brains are discussed.

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