Do Reptiles Dream?
Do reptiles dream? Reports suggest that they do. All animals seem to need some sort of dream state while sleeping, and reptiles show signs of being no exception.
Reptile Brain Study
Recent brain studies on reptiles found similar brain wave patterns as those found in mammals and birds. This study showed that lizards and snakes experienced Rapid Eye Movement (REM) during their sleep, which is the same stage of sleep that humans generally dream in.
Contents of Reptile Dreams
Researchers believe that reptiles experience dreams that are purely instinctive, such as the pursuit and consumption of prey. Some evidence suggests that reptiles may even dream of their fight-or-flight responses. Reptiles may also dream of the movements they make while hunting, such as swimming.
Benefits of Dreaming in Reptiles
There are several potential benefits that can come from dreaming in reptiles. Dreaming can help reptiles encode important information, allowing them to remember events for later recall. It can also help them anticipate future events and plan accordingly. Finally, it may even aid in the development and maintenance of reptiles’ complex behavioral repertoires.
Evidence of Reptile Dreaming
Researchers have collected evidence that suggests reptiles dream by observing changes in the electrical activity of their brains. Brain activity during REM Sleep is often associated with dreaming in humans, so scientists have sought to see if the same patterns can be seen in reptiles.
The evidence seems to indicate that reptiles do in fact dream. Although the precise content of their dreams is unknown, researchers believe that they dream in an instinctive way. The benefits of dreaming in reptiles, such as the ability to recall and anticipate future events, would imply that dreaming is a useful tool in their survival.