[en] We have developed a video tracking system in order to determine all the trajectories of young fish (Oreochromis niloticus L.) within a school. Both individual and collective behaviours have been studied as a function of the number of fish per unit area. By studying distributions of distances between fish and distributions of relative orientations, structural effects and cooperative motions have been evidenced. Signatures of a phase transition have been found, as predicted by some numerical models. This work opens new perspectives in the study of collective phenomena in biological systems since it is the first time that such measurements are possible.
Unité Biologie du comportement: Laboratoire d'éthologie des poissons et des Amphibiens ; Group for Research and applications in Statistical Physics
Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (Communauté française de Belgique) - F.R.S.-FNRS