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2. History of animal behavior

2. History of animal behavior - Humans have been observing...

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Humans have been observing and manipulating animals for thousands of years.
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(Probably never observing this!) (But definitely responsible for the existence of domestic animals.)
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In the classical Greco-Roman world, animals were observed and their behavior recorded. In some cases the recorded behaviors were accurate, but others showed a high degree of anthropomorphism . “Amongst land animals, the elephant is the largest and the one whose intelligence comes nearest that of man, for he understands the language of his country, obeys commands, has a memory for training, takes delight in love and honour, and also possesses a rare thing even amongst men – honesty, self-control and a sense of justice; he also worships stars and venerates the sun and moon.” Pliny (23-79 A.D.)
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The rigorous scientific study of animal behavior did not begin until the latter part of the 19 th century, but before that three major developments contributed to the study of animal behavior: 1. publication of the theory of evolution by natural selection 2. development of a systematic comparative method 3. studies in genetics and inheritance
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Relatively constant resources and population size over time Potential for rapid reproduction Competition for survival and reproduction Variability in structures and behaviors NATURAL SELECTION: On the average, the fittest organisms leave the most offspring Some variability is inherited EVOLUTION: The genetic makeup of the population changes over time, driven by natural selection Observation Conclusion based on observation 1. Flow Chart of Evolutionary Reasoning
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Remember that evolution does not occur to individuals, only to populations over time!
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