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MU Seminar '18

Behavior Ecology Reading

Evolutionary forces shape behavior.
Behavioral Ecology Behavioral ecology is the study of how natural selection shapes behavior.
Foraging Behavior Natural selection may favor the evolution of foraging behaviors that maximize the amount of energy gained per unit time spent foraging. Animals that acquire energy efficiently during foraging may increase their fitness by having more energy available for
reproduction, but other considerations, such as avoiding predators, also are important in determining reproductive success.
Territorial Behavior An economic approach can be used to explain the evolution and ecology of reproductive behaviors such as territoriality. This approach assumes that animals that gain more energy from a behavior than they expend will have an advantage in survival and
reproduction over animals that behave in less efficient ways.
Reproductive behavior involves many choices influenced by natural selection.
Parental Investment and Mate Choice Reproductive investment by the sexes is strongly influenced by differences in the degree of parental investment.
Reproductive Competition and Sexual Selection Natural selection has favored the evolution of behaviors that maximize the reproductive success of males and females. By evaluation the selecting mates with superior qualities, an animal can increase its reproductive success.
Mating Systems Mating systems represent reproductive adaptations to ecological conditions. The need for parental care, the ability of both sexes to provide it, and the timing of female reproduction are important influences on the evolution of monogamy, polygyny, and
polyandry. Detailed study of animal mating systems, along with the use of modern molecular techniques, are revealing many surprises in animal mating systems. This diversity is a testament to the power of natural selection to favor any trait that increases
an animal's fitness.
There is considerable controversy about the evolution of social behavior.
Factors Favoring Altruism and Group Living Many factors could be responsible for the evolution of altruistic behaviors.
Examples of Kin Selection Kin selection is a potent force favoring, in some situations, the evolution of altruism and even complex social systems.
Group Living and the Evolution of Social Systems Eusocial insect workers exhibit an advanced social structure that includes division of labor in reproduction and workers with different tasks.
Vertebrates exhibit a broad range of social behaviors.
Vertebrate Societies Social behavior in vertebrates is often characterized by kin-selected altruism. Altruistic behavior is involved in cooperative breeding in birds and alarm-calling in mammals.
Human Sociobiology Sociobiology offers general explanations of human behavior that are controversial, but are becoming more generally accepted than in the past.
Created by: BriawnaW



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