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My Notes Ch. 51 - Chapter 51 Animal Behavior Overview Shall...

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Chapter 51- Animal Behavior Overview: Shall we dance? Animal behavior is based on physiological systems and processes A behavior is the nervous system’s response to a stimulus and is carried out by the muscular or hormonal system Behavior helps an animal o Obtain food o Find mates o Maintain homeostasis(produce and conserve body heat) Behavior contributes to survival and reproduction Behavior is subject to natural selection 51.1 - Discrete sensory inputs can stimulate both simple and complex behaviors An animal’s behavior is its response to external and internal stimuli Ethology - is the scientific study of animal behavior, particularly in natural environments According to early ethologist, Niko Tinbergen, four questions should be asked about behavior: 1. What stimulus elicits the behavior, and what physiological mechanisms mediate the response? 2. How does the animal’s experience during growth and development influence the response mechanisms? 3. How does the behavior aid survival and reproduction? 4. What is the behavior’s evolutionary history? These questions highlight the complementary nature of proximate and ultimate perspectives. Proximate causation , or “how” explanations, focus on o Environmental stimuli that triggers behavior o Genetic, physiological, and anatomical mechanisms underlying a behavior
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Ultimate causation , or “why” explanations, focus on o Evolutionary significance of a behavior Behavioral ecology is the study of the ecological and evolutionary basis for animal behavior o It integrates proximate and ultimate explanations for animal behavior Fixed Action Patterns A fixed action pattern is a sequence of unlearned, innate behaviors that is unchangeable. Once initiated, it is usually carried to completion. A fixed action pattern is triggered by an external cue known as a sign stimulus . Oriented Movement Environmental cues can trigger movement in a particular direction Kinesis and Taxis A kinesis is a simple change in activity or turning rate in response to a stimulus A taxis is a more or less automatic, oriented movement toward or away from a stimulus Migration Migration is a regular, long-distance change in location Animals can orient themselves using o The position of the sun and their circadian clock o The position of the North star o The Earth’s magnetic field Behavioral Rhythms Some animal behavior is affected by the animal’s circadian rhythm, a daily cycle of rest and activity
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