History of Animal Behaviour

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First found May 22, 2018

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Charles Darwin
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History of the Study of Animal
Behaviour
History of Studies of Animal
Behaviour
•
•
•
•
Scala Naturae (Aristotle)
Evolutionary Approach (J.Lamarck; C.Darwin)
Ethology (K.Lorenz; N.Tinbergen)
Comparative Psychology (C.Morgan;
E.Thorndike; M.&H.Harlow; K.Lashley)
• Sociobiology/Behavioural Ecology
(E.O.Wilson; W.D.Hamilton)
<-- Humans
Scala Naturae
(the great chain of beings)
Jean-Baptiste de Lamarck (1744-1829)
Engraving in 1821
Charles Darwin (1809-1882)
wedding portrait done in 1841
Evolution according to Lamarck
According to Lamarck, constant use
of certain organs led to changes in the
organs themselves. For example,
stretching of the neck, in the case of
the giraffe, led to its gradual
lengthening.
Evolution according to Darwin
Darwin maintained that
the mechanism of natural selection
was responsible for the evolution
of longer-necks in giraffes:
individuals with longer necks survived
to pass their ‘long-neck’ trait along.
Ethologists
Comparative
Psychologists
• Evolution, function
• Mechanisms, development
• Innate behaviour
• Learned behavour
• Many species
• Few species
• Natural habitats
• Laboratory
• Species differences
• General laws
The egg retrieval response of the greylag
goose
Fixed Action Pattern- a programmed
behaviour pattern triggered by a specific
environmental stimulus
• It is innate or unlearned
• It is stereotyped
• It is difficult to disrupt
QuickTime™ and a TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor are needed to see this picture.
QuickTime™ and a TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor are needed to see this picture.
A gull attempting to incubate a super-egg
instead of her own egg
Clever Hans - a horse
with a head for numbers
Conwy Lloyd Morgan (1852-1936)
Photograph from ca. 1900
Morgan’s Canon
“In no case may we interpret an action as the
outcome of the exercise of a higher
psychical faculty if it can be interpreted as
the outcome of the exercise of one which
stands lower in the psychological scale.”
(Morgan 1891, p. 53)
Thorndike’s puzzle box
Mother-Infant
Bonding
Primates have a biological need
for contact comfort
Margaret and Harry Harlow
Karl Lashley attempted to locate the locus of learning
in the cerebral cortex
Sociobiology/Behavioural Ecology
•Focus on the function of behaviour
•Cost/benefit analysis of the individual
acts
•All behaviour is ultimately selfish
(it maximizes individual genetic success)
Alarm call by a ground squirrel
×

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