Flashcards in Lecture 1: An Evolutionary Approach to Animal Behaviour Deck (23):
two types of question you get
Proximate AND Ultimate
who was tinbergen?
Man who created four questions to ask animal behaviour, 2 How, 2 Why
tinbergens four questions
example tinbergen's four questions: Squirrel
-red cache nuts in piles ono ground
-grey hide them but forget where they are
-red access food source in winter/early spring
--what causes them to store the nuts?
--how did the behaviour develop over the early life stages of the squirrel?
--evolutionary history of action?
--whats the selective pressure which maintains the behaviour?
example tinbergen's four questions: eye spots on Moths
-emperor moth has eye spots on all 4 wings
-eyed hawk moth only has them on hide wings
-presence of predator stimulate sensory system, promotes reaction in motor system (flashing of eye spots)
-development determined by insect genes and interaction genes have with environment
---> Form mechanism (PROXIMATE) answer HOW
---> ULTIMATE answers Why
proximate and ultimate answers are often referred to as the
the levels of analysis
proximate causes include
Ultimate causes include
-Historical pathways leading to a current behavioural trait
-selective processes shaping the history of a behavioural trait
Tinbergen Mechanistic question: Orientation in Bee Wolves
-female bee wolf provision her underground nest with honey bees. She covers over the entrance before she goes hunting.
-HOW DOES SHE FIND HER NEST AFTER HUNTING???
--on flying away, she circles presumably to memorise landmarks near the entrance
---he set pine cones in obvious pattern around nest, he then moved them to confuse bee
-after hunting, she couldn't find the nest. she went to centre of pine cones
Tinbergen functional question: Egg shell removal by parent birds
-adult birds remove broken egg shells away from nest
-HE THOUGHT THEY DID THIS TO DETER PREDATORS
-set up fake gull nests, with broken egg shell different distances from nest
--closer broken egg shell from nest, greater chance nest predation by crows
experiment which ties ultimate & proximate ideas together: Comma butterfly & Peacock butterfly
-both spp have cryptic under wings, to appear like wings.
-if disturbed during resting, comma keeps wings close, peacock flashes bright wings and creates hissing noise by rubbing wings
Valiln A et al paper. peacock have 2 ways to scare predators:
eyespots and hissing sounds,
carried out 6 experiments, 3 manipulations, 3 controls --> removed eyespots, removed hissing, removed eye spots and hissing (both)
---> results = eyespots!, reason for deterring predators SO WHY BOTHER TO PRODUCE HISS?? might protect against bats?
are all spots for scaring predators?
Meadow Brown, Maniola jurtina. Small eye spots near the wing tips are not to scare predators. Instead they provide a non-vital target
4 Steps in the Scientific Method:
1) Ask a QUESTION about an observed behaviour
2) Establish a HYPOTHESIS to potentially explain what has been seen
3) Set up PREDICTIONS based on the hypothesis
4) TEST these predictions by gathering appropriate data (field observations, experiments etc)
behaviour where a bird (blue jay) disturbs an ant mound with its feet or breasts, ants climb onto body and spray formic acid
2 hypothesis for why birds engage in anting behaviour
H1 = kills parasites in the feathers (feather lice)
H2 = makes ants more palatable (less formic acid)
how we can identify the evolutionary history of behaviours: 4 subfamilies of Apidae bees
how we can identify the evolutionary history of behaviours: The aping, bombinate and meliponiae are
EUSOCIAL, live together in large colonies, only few individuals reproduce others take upon other roles
-care for young together
how we can identify the evolutionary history of behaviours: Euglossinae are
solitary, live on their own
how we can identify the evolutionary history of behaviours: apinae and meliponinae are ___ forming and also are known for ___
-swarm forming (honey and stingless bees)
- Nectar transfer (forager -> receiver)