Animal Behavior Ecology Unit. What is Animal Behavior? The study of how and why animals interact with each other (both within and among species) and their.

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  • Animal BehaviorEcology Unit

  • What is Animal Behavior?

    The study of how and why animals interact with each other (both within and among species) and their environment.Proximate questions - howmechanisms responsible for interactionsEx: rooster crows because light breaksUltimate questions - whyhow these interactions influence an individual's survival and reproduction.Ex: rooster crows to establish territorial rights

  • EthologyObservation/Analysis of animals as they interact in their natural environment

  • Some examples:Intraspecific interactionsmate choice

  • Some examples:Intraspecific interactionsmale competition

  • Some examples:Intraspecific interactionsalarm calls

  • Some examples:Intraspecific interactionsparental care

  • Some examples:Interspecific interactionspredation

  • Some examples:Interspecific interactionsSymbiotic relationships

  • Some examples:Interspecific interactionscompeitition

  • Some examples:Interactions with the environmentforaging

  • Some examples:Interactions with the environmentnest site selection

  • Some examples:Interactions with the environmentsignal modification

  • Why study behavior?Possible first science: Our survival dependent on knowledge of other animals (prey/competitors/predators).Control/management of species: agricultural pests, invasive species, endangered species.Understanding/modification of our own behavior? Studies of how birds learn and develop songs provide unique insights into the development and neural control of speech in humans.

  • What can we learn about human behavior by observing animals?

  • Founders of the field of Animal BehaviorNikoTinbergenKonrad LorenzKarl von FrischThe Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1973"for their discoveries concerning organization and elicitation of individual and social behaviour patterns"

  • Terms to KnowInnate:behavior present at birth

  • FIXED ACTION PATTERNInnate behavioral responseCommon to all members of speciesOnce initiated, continues until completion

  • Sign Stimulus:External change in the environment that triggers a Fixed Action Pattern

  • NATURE vs. NURTUREAka: Genetics vs. EnvironmentAka: Innate behavior vs. Learned BehaviorWhat is Learning?Behavioral changes that occur due to life experience

  • special types of learningHabituation: Animal learns to ignore an irrelevant stimulusImprinting:irreversible (usually) learning that occurs during CRITICAL PERIOD

  • Konrad Lorenz (1903-1989) examined genetically programmed behaviors in young and imprinting.

    Young geese form an image of parent just after hatching. If the hatchlings first encounter a human, they will imprint on him and follow him around as if he were their mother.

  • more types of learningASSOCIATIVE LEARNINGCLASSICAL CONDITIONINGStimulus leads to a response that does not normally occur as a result of that stimulus

    Ivan Pavlov

  • Little Albert (1920)

  • OPERANT CONDITIONINGAnimal learns to associate one behavior with either REWARD or PUNISHMENT!Reward Repeat BehaviorPunishment Avoidance of Behavior

  • Animal MovementTAXIS vs.KINESIS

  • Social BehaviorPlayAgonistic DisplaysCourtshipBatesian Mimicry (posers)Mullerian MimicryAltruistic Displays


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