Three-dimensional time-resolved trajectories from laboratory insect swarms

Michael Sinhuber, Kasper van der Vaart, Rui Ni, James G. Puckett, Douglas H. Kelley, Nicholas T. Ouellette

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Aggregations of animals display complex and dynamic behaviour, both at the individual level and on the level of the group as a whole. Often, this behaviour is collective, so that the group exhibits properties that are distinct from those of the individuals. In insect swarms, the motion of individuals is typically convoluted, and swarms display neither net polarization nor correlation. The swarms themselves, however, remain nearly stationary and maintain their cohesion even in noisy natural environments. This behaviour stands in contrast with other forms of collective animal behaviour, such as flocking, schooling, or herding, where the motion of individuals is more coordinated, and thus swarms provide a powerful way to study the underpinnings of collective behaviour as distinct from global order. Here, we provide a data set of three-dimensional, time-resolved trajectories, including positions, velocities, and accelerations, of individual insects in laboratory insect swarms. The data can be used to study the collective as a whole as well as the dynamics and behaviour of individuals within the swarm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number190036
JournalScientific Data
StatePublished - 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Information Systems
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Library and Information Sciences


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