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Transcript
Lesson Overview
29.1 Elements of Behavior
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
THINK ABOUT IT
At a Caribbean seaside restaurant, a young boy eats a hamburger, unaware that he’s
being watched—by an iguana. This lizard, a shy tree-dwelling species, is a vegetarian.
He makes a beeline for the boy’s french fries. These iguanas normally don’t approach
humans, but this particular iguana has learned that getting close to humans can
mean easy access to food.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Behavior and Evolution
What is the significance of behavior in the evolution of animal species?
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Behavior and Evolution
What is the significance of behavior in the evolution of animal species?
If a behavior that is influenced by genes increases an individual’s fitness, that
behavior will tend to spread through a population. Over many generations,
various kinds of adaptive behaviors can play central roles in the survival of
populations and species.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Behavior and Evolution
Behavior is the way an organism reacts to stimuli in its environment.
Usually, behaviors are performed when an animal detects and responds to some
sort of stimulus in its environment. The way an animal responds to a stimulus,
however, often depends on its internal condition.
Many behaviors are essential to survival. To survive and reproduce, animals must
be able to find and catch food, select habitats, avoid predators, and find mates.
Behaviors that make these activities possible are just as important as physical
characteristics.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Behavior and Evolution
Some behaviors are influenced by genes and can therefore be inherited.
If a behavior that is influenced by genes increases an individual’s fitness, that
behavior will tend to spread through a population. Over many generations,
various kinds of adaptive behaviors can play central roles in the survival of
populations and species.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Behavior and Evolution
The genes that code for the behavior of the moth helps it escape
predators.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Behavior and Evolution
If disturbed, the moth will move its front wings to expose a striking circular
pattern on its hind wings. This behavior may scare off predators that
mistake the moth’s hind-wing pattern for the eyes of a predator.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Innate Behavior
What is an innate behavior?
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Innate Behavior
What is an innate behavior?
Innate behaviors appear in fully functional form the first time they are performed,
even though the animal has had no previous experience with the stimuli to which
it responds.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Innate Behavior
Innate behaviors are also called instincts.
The suckling of a newborn mammal is an example of an innate behavior.
All innate behaviors depend on patterns of nervous system activity that develop
through complex interactions between genes and the environment.
Innate behaviors enable animals to perform certain tasks essential to survival
without the need for experience.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Learned Behavior
What are the major types of learning?
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Learned Behavior
What are the major types of learning?
The four major types of learning are habituation, classical conditioning, operant
conditioning, and insight learning.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Learned Behavior
Acquiring changes in behavior during an animal’s lifetime is called learning.
Many animals have the ability to learn. This chimpanzee is exhibiting a complex
learned behavior—using a tool to “fish” for termites.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Habituation
Habituation, the simplest type of learning, is a process by which an animal
decreases or stops its response to a repetitive stimulus that neither rewards nor
harms the animal.
Often, learning to ignore a stimulus that offers neither a reward nor a threat can
enable an individual to spend its time and energy more efficiently.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Habituation
Birds on the side of a road take flight when a car approaches (left). After the
passage of many cars, which haven’t harmed them, the birds no longer take flight
when one approaches (right). The birds have become habituated to the stimulus
of passing cars.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Classical Conditioning
Classical conditioning is a type of learning in which a certain stimulus comes to
produce a particular response, usually through association with a positive or
negative experience.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Operant Conditioning
Operant conditioning occurs when an animal learns to behave in a certain way,
through repeated practice, to receive a reward or avoid punishment.
Operant conditioning is sometimes described as a form of trial-and-error learning.
Trial-and-error learning begins with a random behavior that is rewarded in an
event called a trial.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Operant Conditioning
A dog randomly brushes its tail
against a bell hanging on a
doorknob.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Operant Conditioning
The owner responds by opening
the door to let the dog outside.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Operant Conditioning
After the “ring the bell; open the
door” sequence has occurred
several times, the dog has learned
to ring the bell when it wants to
go out. The dog has learned by
operant conditioning how to be
let out of the house.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Insight Learning
The most complicated form of learning is insight learning, or reasoning. Insight
learning occurs when an animal applies something it has already learned to a new
situation, without a period of trial and error.
Insight learning is common among humans and some other primates.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Complex Behaviors
How do many complex behaviors arise?
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Complex Behaviors
How do many complex behaviors arise?
Many complex behaviors combine innate behavior with learning.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Complex Behaviors
Some animals recognize and follow the first moving object that they see in their
early lives. This process is called imprinting and it involves both innate and
learned behavior.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Complex Behaviors
Young birds have an innate urge to follow the first moving object they see. But
they are not born knowing what that object will look like, so they must learn from
experience what to follow. These baby sandhill cranes have imprinted on their
mother and will follow her in flight.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Complex Behaviors
Once imprinting has occurred, the behavior becomes fixed. Sometimes, the fixed
object of imprinting shows up later in life.
Animals can imprint on sounds, odors, or any other sensory cues.
Sometimes, animals imprint on objects.
Lesson Overview
Elements of Behavior
Complex Behaviors
For example, in an experiment, recently hatched cranes raised in
captivity imprinted on a hand puppet. Later, that puppet is used to
help introduce these birds to the wild by guiding them along a
migration route that they would normally learn by following their
parents.