BIOA02 ALL MODULE 3 LECTURE NOTES

137 views26 pages
Published on 25 Apr 2012
School
Course
Professor
BIOA02 MODULE 3 NOTES
Lec 25: Biology of Animal Behaviour I
March 13, 2012
What is Animal Behaviour?
-humans have always studied animal behavior informally
-animal behavior informs behavioural ecology = study of how organisms make “decisions” that
influence their survival and reproductive success
-study of how animals “decide”
-where to carry out activities
-select resources
-respond predators and competitors
-interact with conspecifics other members of their species in population
-animal behavior = ethology
-ethology = study of animal behavior in natural environments from an evolutionary prospective
-what are the questions that must be answered to understand and behavior?
1. What is the mechanistic basis of the behavior, including chemical, anatomical, physiological
mechanisms?
2. How does development of an animal influence behavior?
3. What is the evolutionary history of the behavior?
4. How does behavior contribute to survival and reproduction (fitness)?
How do Genes and Environment Interact?
-genes do not encode behavior
-gene products (i.e. enzyme) can affect behavior by starting a series of gene environment interactions
that underlie development of behavioural mechanisms
-experimental methods to determine how genes and environment influence behavior:
1. deprivation experiments = young animals are reared with no experiences related to behavior
2. genetic experiments = genome is altered by interbreeding; by comparing individuals that differ
by only one gene; or by knocking out or inserting specific genes
What are the Major Types of Behaviour?
-biologists study the ways both genes and the environment
-influence the development of behavioural phenotypes
-nature vs. nuture issue is not about whether genes or environment influence behavior how are both
involved
-chemicals that mimic hormones especially estrogen and this may be having major consequences
suggests that the build of these chemicals in feminization of various animal species and decreased
quality and quantity of sperm in humans
-types of behavior:
1. instinctive behavior
-genetically programmed response
-complete and functional on first use
-innate behavior
-often highly stereotyped
-variation may reflect underlying genetic differences
-include:
1. directed movements:
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-3 of the document.
Unlock all 26 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in
a) kinesis involves a simple change in activity or turning rate in response to a stimulus
(e.g. pill bugs) change in speed of movement
b) taxis is a more or less automatic, oriented movement toward or away from a
stimulus change in direction of movement
2. fixed action pattern (FAP)
-some behaviours expressed only in certain conditions, where an object, events or
condition is required to elicit a behavior (=releaser or sign stimulus)
-sequence of unlearned, innate behaviours that is unchangeable
-usually carried to completion once initiated
-triggered by an external sensory stimulus
-examples of FAP:
-stereotypic behaviors can be adjusted by spatial cues in environment:
-spiders adjusts web to fit geometry of nearby structures
-digger wasps learn location of their nest by remembering features around it
(e.g. use landmarks)
-in male stickleback fish sign stimulus for attack behavior is red underside of
intruder even when presented with unrealistic models with some red present
on the underside, attack behavior occurs stickleback fish may become too
exhaustive to breed in the end and these behaviours have a cost
HOW? the red belly of the intruding male acts as a sign stimulus that releases
aggression in a male stickleback
WHY? by chasing away other male sticklebacks, a male decreases chance that
eggs laid in his nesting territory will be fertilized by another competing males
-in herring gulls sign stimulus for pecking behavior of chicks is a red spot on
the lower beak of parent
HOW? the red spot on parent’s beak acts as a sign stimulus that triggers
pecking behavior of chick to get food
WHY? ensures chicks get fed and survive until they can feed on their own
2. learned behavior
-dependent upon experiences during development
-is modification of behavior
-is based on specific prior experiences
-range from very simple to very complex
-include:
1. imprinting
-includes both learning and innate components
-generally irreversible
-distinguished from other types of learning by sensitive (or critical) period = a limited
phase in development that is the only time when certain behaviors (e.g. recognition of
parents) can be learned
-Konrad Lorenz = father of ethology; studied the imprinting behaviour in geese short
window of time where young hatchlings learn and beyond that they are stuck with
genetic behaviour that is irreversible the goose imprints on Lorenz and follow him
around and later on try to mate with humans
-it is important that the young imprint and recognize their parents and follow
them to water hole and migration
2. habituation
-loss of responsiveness to stimuli that convey little or no information
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-3 of the document.
Unlock all 26 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in
3. associative learning
-animals associate one feature of their environment with another
a) classical conditioning use of an arbitrary stimulus that becomes associated with a
reward or punishment
b) operant conditioning occurs when an animal learns to associate one of its
behaviours with a reward or punishment
4. cognition and problem solving
-cognition is the ability of an animal’s nervous system:
-to perceive, store, process, and use information gathered by sensory receptors
-animals have ability to process information
-problem solving behaviour highly developed in primates and dolphins, some birds
(crows, ravens, jays)
-problem-solving can be learned by observing of other animals
Lec 26 + 27: Biology of Animal Behaviour II
March 15, 16 2012
How do Animals Communicate with One Another?
-when animals interact, they exchange information animals communicate
-communication = reception of and response to signals
-signal = causes a change in another animals behaviour
-type of signal related to animal’s lifestyle and environment
-animals communicate using: acoustical (auditory), visual, chemical (olfactory), tactile, electrical
-some signaling behaviours are innate (or genetically fixed) and other signaling behaviours are learned
-i.e. song birds have species-specific songs used in territorial displays and courtship must hear
song when they are nestlings, even though they do not sing it until mature
What Behavioural “Decisions” do Animals make?
-behaviour decisions made in variable environments
-behaviours decisions based on a cost-benefit approach
-assume animal has a limited amount of energy for its activities, it cannot perform behaviours if
energetic cost greater than benefits
-benefits lead to improved survival/reproductive success
-costs have three components:
1. Energetic cost: difference in energy expended if resting vs. energy expended in performing
behaviour
2. Risk cost: increased chance of being injured or killed as a result of the behaviour
3. Opportunity cost: sum of benefits of forfeited behaviour = measure of trade-offs
-animals must make many decisions about:
1. where to live (space)
2. when to move/leave (migration)
3. what to eat (food and water)
4. which other animals to associate (mates)
-how do animals make hese “decisions”?
1. Habit Selection
-one of the most important decision
-cues animals use to select habitats are predictors of conditions suitable for survival and
reproduction
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-3 of the document.
Unlock all 26 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in

Document Summary

Humans have always studied animal behavior informally. Animal behavior informs behavioural ecology = study of how organisms make decisions that influence their survival and reproductive success. Ethology = study of animal behavior in natural environments from an evolutionary prospective. Gene products (i. e. enzyme) can affect behavior by starting a series of gene environment interactions that underlie development of behavioural mechanisms. Biologists study the ways both genes and the environment. Nature vs. nuture issue is not about whether genes or environment influence behavior how are both involved. Chemicals that mimic hormones especially estrogen and this may be having major consequences suggests that the build of these chemicals in feminization of various animal species and decreased quality and quantity of sperm in humans. Some behaviours expressed only in certain conditions, where an object, events or condition is required to elicit a behavior (=releaser or sign stimulus) Sequence of unlearned, innate behaviours that is unchangeable.

Get OneClass Grade+

Unlimited access to all notes and study guides.

YearlyMost Popular
75% OFF
$9.98/m
Monthly
$39.98/m
Single doc
$39.98

or

You will be charged $119.76 upfront and auto renewed at the end of each cycle. You may cancel anytime under Payment Settings. For more information, see our Terms and Privacy.
Payments are encrypted using 256-bit SSL. Powered by Stripe.