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← Insects are scared to death of fish

Functional Atheist's Avatar Jump to comment 14 by Functional Atheist

I wonder if this is related to the rise of consciousness. Not that the dragonflies or their larvae in this study are consciously aware that they are stressed, but there's something in the gap from purely chemical reactions to stimuli to reactions that are based on purely chemical information that is suggestive.

It reminds me of the experiments where houseflies are subjected to electrical shocks and behave irritably. I'm not saying the shocked houseflies are consciously aware that they are irritated, but they are somewhere along a continuum that begins with purely chemical reactions to stimuli.

Perhaps irritable behavior is the beginning of the capacity to feel irritated, and feeling irritated is the beginning of the capacity to be aware of being irritated, and being aware of being irritated is a form of consciousness.

Insects probably do not have consciousness, but sometimes, as in this study, they seem to be somewhere on the pathway that eventually leads to consciousness.

But perhaps I'm just being irritating. Would somebody please pass me the bong?

Sat, 29 Oct 2011 06:11:11 UTC | #885154