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Chapter 4

Ch. 4: The Development of Behavior

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Robert Gerlai

Ch 4 The development of behaviorKey PointsGenetic Variability is linked to variability in expressed behavior but this does not mean the behavior is entirely under the control of genes The particular pattern of behavior expressed by an indivudal will depened upon an interaction of the animals genotype and both the environment in which those genes are expressed and the external environment the animal lives Some behaviors are innate but many are modified as a result of experience ex Behaviors can be learned Animals make use of a wide variety of cues to enable them to successfully navigate and undertake feats of migration Genes and BehaviorGenetics a brief refresher Chromosomes consist of a double helix of DNA Specific sections of DNA act as a template for the production of proteinsThese sections of DNA are termed genes and their specific sites on the chromosome are termed loci Each individual gene is always at the same locus and it always codes for the same protein this means that it also always affects the same character in the organism be that an aspect of behavior physiology or growth form There is however an element of variation possible within individual genes that translates into a variation of phenotypes affected by them The different forms of the gene are termed alleles Except in the specific cases that involve asexual reproduction an organism wil have inherited one set of chromosomes from its mother and another set from its father It will therefore have two alleles at each locus If both alleles are identical the individual is described as being homozygous at that locus If however it has inherited two different alleles at a locus it is referred to as being heterozygous homozygous can exhibit only one possible phenotype heterozygous can exhibit 2Incomplete dominance an intermediate between both ends or the phenotype is determined by one allele that is more dominant The expressed allele is dominant and the not expressed allele is recessiveSingle Gene Effect Foraging Flies and Hygienic BeesGenetic differences between individuals and differences in their behaviors are linked this does not mean that they will behave in a prescribed way simply because they possess a particular gene Under high density conditions the more dominant rover phenotype had become relatively more common it had been selected for and the sitter phenotype selected againstBecause it had forage against more completion but in low densitys the number of sitter phenotype probably because it didnt have to expend unnecessary energy foraging Otherwise the gene affected how they behaved It was also found that those with homozygous sitter genes still behaved as rovers moving to find foodPleiotropic effects Some genes are pleiotropic a variation in one of them is expressed as a variation in a number of different phenotypic characters one gene controls multiple things Example One gene controls both the circadian rhythms and a role in Fruit flies courtship
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