The EntoLab software suite runs on a Windows PC and comprises:
- Pylon Viewer camera software, with which you optimize the camera settings, such as exposure time and aperture, for the best possible observation of the insects on the substrate.
- MediaRecorder video capture software, which streams the images from the high-resolution digital camera to a video file on disk. Up to 300 trials can be recorded simultaneously by a single EntoLab system.
- EthoVision XT video tracking software, which processes the video file and generates a track file for each arena in your assay plate.
- EthoAnalysis data processing and statistical analysis software, which turns the tracks into the quantitative parameters describing insect movement, choice and feeding behavior.
Video tracking with EthoVision XT
The EntoLab system comes with EthoVision XT, the renowned computer vision and video tracking software. EthoVision XT processes each high-resolution image in the digital video file, detects the insect against the background in each arena, extracts its body center, and generates a track file for each arena. Due to its superior object detection algorithms, EthoVision XT can handle the most challenging insect-plant combinations. Each track sample contains the X,Y-coordinate, velocity and the zone in which the insect resides (in a two-choice test). EthoVision XT can process a single video file or a batch of files originating from multiple EntoLab chambers, in a fully automated fashion.
Computing statistics with EthoAnalysis
Track files are imported into EthoAnalysis, a specialized software package developed for the analysis of insect behavior recorded with EthoVision XT. Based on various user settings, which can be specific for an insect species, EthoAnalysis translates the raw track data into series of zone-specific behaviors of three categories: halting, moving, and not-detected. From these time series, various behavior statistics are computed, either for the complete trial or per zone, per hour, or per behavior category, including duration (short/medium/long) or movement velocity (slow/medium/fast).