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the study of animal behavior

innate behavior

behavior inherited through genes, or learned through interactions w/ environment.


behavior that's innate or inherited


innate behavior that follows an unvarying pattern.

example of fap

fish responds aggressively to another fish w/ a red belly. anything else red that the fish sees it will also respond aggressively.


acquiring a specific behavior, is irreversible

example of imprinting

bird hatches and which ever moving object it sees first, the bird declares it to be its mother, and will always see it as its mother even when presented w/ its actual mother.

associative learning

animal recognizes two or more events are connected


loss of acquired behavior

spatial learning

animal can find a location based on landmarks along the path


disregard of a meaningless stimuli

observational learning

copy the behavior of another animal


animal in a new setting performs a behavior with a favorable outcome


innate behavior sometimes requires _____ , bird has to grow physically before attempting to fly, even though its instincts tell it to fly sooner.

associative learning

allows animal to benefit from exposure to unexpected repeated events.

observational learning

learn new behaviors in response to unexpected events w/o receiving reinforcement. reduces time required for new behaviors to be learned.


undirected change in speed of animal's response to a stimulus. Slows down is favorable, speed up isn't


directed movement, towards or away from a stimulus

chemical, visual, auditory, tactile

4 forms of communication for animals

optimize feeding

goal is to maximize amount eaten while reducing energy used to get the food


individuals in a flock are hidden from view


w/ more animals watching out for predators, it's easier to detect danger


corner and successfully attack large prey

search images

animals find food by looking for an image of the target.

agonistic behavior

aggression and submission, is ritualized so injuries and time spent in contests are reduced

dominance hierarchies

indicate power and status in relationships, reduce fighting for food and mates


active possession and defense of the territory, insure adequate food and place to mate

altruistic behavior

reduce fitness of animal, when it risks safety in defense of another

inclusive fitness

fitness of individual plus relatives

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