Basic Studies on Dynamics of Groups by Analyses of Stereoscopic Movies

Project Gist

We are creating science of animal groups. Understanding them, predicting them and controlling them.


animal groups, movie analysis, torus, time average

Background, Purpose, and Project Achievements

We are trying to create “science of animal groups” in order to understand nature of groups of livings including humans. As an initial step, we are focusing on fish schools (sardines) in an aquarium and taking videos from the bottom of the fish tank. Our aim is to understand the nature of fish schools, especially reasons why they have beautiful donut shape and quick responses of whole systems against attacks by predators. Furthermore we are developing stereoscopic camera system to get more precise information of the fish schools.

Future Prospects

At present, our research mainly concerns fish schools to understand a basic nature of animal groups. We shall extend our scope to activities of human groups, for which major subjects seem to be flows of pedestrian and emergency evacuation. However we try to spread area of human groups activity from a view point of science of animal group in order to covers much wider subjects, e.g. consensus building, emergence of fashions and blog flaming processes.


A snapshot of a sardines school in a donut shape taken from a bottom of the large fish tank in the Kujyukushima aquarium.

A project member are setting cameras at the bottom of the large fish tank by permission of the aquarium.

A typical example of the stereoscopic picture from the bottom of the tank. You can see a 3D view by wearing of anaglyph glasses. Since the 3D apparatus does not have sufficiently long baseline, only fishes which are relatively close to the camera are recognized in 3D view.

Principal Investigator


・SAKAGAMI Masa-aki
・Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies
・My subject is physics. I used to research on black holes and self-gravitating systems in the fields of general relativity and astrophysics. Now I am challenging to create a research field on "science of groups" in which I try to clarify animal (and human) collective behaviors from the view point of physics.