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Lecture 25 - Ecology.docx

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Biology (Sci)
BIOL 111
Suzanne Gray

Lecture 25 - Ecology Ecology: study of interactions between organisms and their environment  Behavioral ecology: study of animal behavior in relation to the environment (i.e., how do animals eat?) o Factors to consider: 1. Abundance of different prey types 2. Catch-ability of different prey types 3. Quality of different prey types o Standard prediction of foraging theory: animals should eat foods that maximize their energy intake o Example #1: Bears and Salmon  Bears get energy from salmon, who are not around during all seasons, therefore bears should eat the newest, most energy- rich fish…only in places where catching the fish is easy o Example #2: Why does altruistic behavior evolve?  At the extreme, some individuals help others to reproduce but do not to do so themselves  Prediction: animals preferentially help their kin because doing so increases the reproduction of alleles they both carry (inclusive fitness) o Other complications: 1. Competition 2. Predation risk 3. Essential Nutrients o Other possibilities: 1. Group selection (help each other can increase success as a whole) 2. Reciprocal altruism (I’ll do for you, what you do for me) 3. Punishment (if you’re a mean person, we will punish you)
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