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This study presents evidence that carrier shot noise, inspite of its relatively small magnitude, has a profound effect on the dynamics of a semiconductor laser as described by the rate equations. The authors calibrate spontaneous emission and shot noise strength to measurements and thereafter use the rate equations description of filtered optical feedback as a test bed. Then the direct influence of shot noise on laseer dynamics in the presence o co-existing attractors is identified. Due to the growing interest in chaos for applications such as encrypted communication, it is essential that noise be included in the correct manner so that attractors that are predicted by theory can be identified experimentally.