Thorogood, R; Kokko, H; Mappes, J

Foraging behaviour of Parus major held in temporary captivity

The data set describes foraging decisions by great tits (Parus major), held in temporary captivity. Data were collected from birds caught from forest at the University of Jyväskylä Research Station, Konnevesi (62°37.7'N 026°17'E), Finland, and were collected during the winter of 2013-2014. Birds were presented with (1) two different coloured plastic cups, or (2) two different artificial prey (almond pieces inside a paper packet and printed with a black and white symbol). One symbol was made bitter-tasting by soaking the almond piece in chloroquine, and learning behaviour was recorded over three trials. Half of the birds in both experiments were presented videos of a demonstrator great tit, to provide social information about prey characteristics and unpalatability. Data were collected to test hypotheses about the evolutionary consequences of social information use by predators as part of a NERC-funded Independent Research Fellowship.

Publication date: 2017-10-20

Get the data

This dataset is made available under the terms of the Open Government Licence

Format of the data: Comma-separated values (CSV)

You must cite: Thorogood, R; Kokko, H; Mappes, J (2017). Foraging behaviour of Parus major held in temporary captivity. NERC Environmental Information Data Centre.


© Cambridge University


Study area
Temporal extent
2013-10-17    to    2014-01-24

Provenance & quality

Data on foraging decisions of wild great tits (Paris major), held in captivity temporarily, were collected between 17th October 2013 - 24th January 2014 in central Finland. Data were generated during two procedures, with 14 out of 56 birds used to generate both parts of the dataset. Half of the birds were presented with video playback before the foraging test to provide social information about food options.

Supplemental information

This dataset is referenced in:

Thorogood, R., Kokko, H., & Mappes, J. (2018). Social transmission of avoidance among predators facilitates the spread of novel prey (p. ). Apollo - University of Cambridge Repository

Correspondence/contact details

Dr. Rose Thorogood
University of Cambridge


Thorogood, R
University of Cambridge
Kokko, H
University of Zurich
Mappes, J
University of Jyväskylä

Other contacts

Environmental Information Data Centre
NERC Environmental Information Data Centre
Rights Holder
University of Cambridge

Additional metadata

Topic categories
Animal behaviour aposematism,  evolution,  Evolutionary ecology foraging,  Great tit,  Konnevesi Parus major prey defence,  Wild bird
Natural Environment Research Council Award: NE/K00929X/1
Spatial representation type
Tabular (text)
Spatial reference system
WGS 84
Last updated
13 March 2020 14:31