Scientists, led by University of Bristol, have been studying a fish sensory organ to understand cues for collective behavior which could be employed on underwater robots.
This work was centered around the lateral line sensing organ in African cichlid fish, but found in almost all fish species, that enables them to sense and interpret water pressures around them with enough acuity to detect external influences such as neighboring fish, changes in water flow, predators and obstacles.
The lateral line system as a whole is distributed over the head, trunk and tail of the fish. It is comprised of mechanoreceptors (neuromasts) that are either within subdermal channels or on the surface of the skin.
Continue reading at bristol.ac.uk.