GOAL: The goal of this course is to provide students with an overview of the behavior of animals. We will explore the physiological, ecological, and evolutionary causes and correlates of behavior.
TEXT: Animal Behavior (5th edition) by Drickamer, Vessey, and Meikle.
Wm. C. Brown Publishers, 2000.
QUIZZES AND EXAMS: A variety of questions will be used on quizzes
and exams, including those requiring single word answers or paragraph length
answers in clear, correct English.
First Examination 100 pts
Second Examination 100
Final Examination 100
Notes Quiz 50
Squirrel Quiz 50
Human Quiz 50
Total 450 pts
415- 42 A
400- 414 A-
370- 384 B
360- 369 B-
350- 359 C+
340- 349 C
330- 339 C-
320- 329 D+
310- 319 D
300- 309 D-
< 300 F
MAKE-UP POLICY: There will be no make-up for the quizzes. An examination should only be missed under dire circumstances. A written excuse from a physician or a funeral director is required. A make-up exam will be given just prior to the final examination to cover both missed examinations.
ATTENDANCE: Self-recorded (sign-in sheet in classroom.) You are expected to attend every lecture. A grade of "incomplete" will be given only to students who, because of significant medical or other problems (written excuse required), miss 4 or more consecutive lectures after the drop period.
COURSE INFORMATION: Syllabus, readings, lecture outlines, and previous
exams (from a prior instructor) are available online at: http://www2.ncsu.edu/ncsu/cals/course/zo410/
Students are encouraged to download lecture outlines for use in class.
All students are expected to follow the University
policy on academic integrity found in the Code of Student Conduct.
You will be observing two species of animals this semester: gray squirrels and humans. Each species will be observed for a period of approximately 4 weeks. At the end of the observations you will be quizzed on the behavior of that species. The schedule and requirements for the observations are as follows:
Begin observations on September 4, 2001.
Quiz (50 pts) on behavior of squirrels on October 4, 2001.
All observations must be done in the library.
Begin observations on October 23, 2001.
Quiz (50 pts) on behavior of humans on November 29, 2001.
In general, your approach to animal behavior in this course will be one of "naturalistic" observations. First familiarize yourself with the species behaviors by reading the appropriate references.
Spend a few hours a week observing the animal(s). Scatter your observations at different times of the day. While observing, be as quiet and inconspicuous as possible. DO NOT feed, chase, or in any other way disturb the animals (or humans!). Take notes on the behaviors observed. Things to look for in your observations include:
1. Frequencies of behaviors
4. Orientation to objects or other animals
5. Location where behaviors occur
6. Social interactions-- type and with whom they occur
7. Social spacing-- territoriality, home range, personal space
You should also be able to identify the function associated
with all behaviors observed. In other words, know not only what the
animal is doing, but also why it is doing it.
Finally, you should try to determine ecological parameters that shape the behaviors, social spacing or social relationships in the particular species. That is, answer the question-- why are these behaviors adaptive?
*In the squirrels, pay particular attention to the social spacing of the animals. Be able to delineate areas used by the animals and know functions that certain parts of these areas serve. Be able to identify the type of social organization, mating system and parental care found in the species. This means familiarizing yourself with behaviors during the reproductive season, as well as the current season.
Bakken, A. 1959. Behavior of gray squirrels. Symposium on gray squirrel. Contr. 162, Maryland Dept. Res. Ed., pp. 393-407.
( two copies on reserve in library)
*For human observations concentrate on two areas: 1) social spacing; and 2) size and composition of groups. Observe one area of the library and concentrate on one or two study tables of the same size. Note positions of individuals in relationship with other individuals. Pay particular attention to non-verbal communications (eg. posture, facial expression, gestures and eye or physical contact.) How do individuals delineate their personal space? Does personal space size vary? Under what circumstances is personal smaller? larger? Do males and females group independently of each other? Does group size effect the interaction or personal space maintained between the sexes?
Eibl-Eibesfeldt, I. 1971. Transcultural patterns of ritualized contact behavior. In Behavior and Environment: The Use of Space by Animals and Men. Plenum Press, NY, pp.238-45.
(two copies on reserve in library)
Instructor: S. Miles Dean
Office: Rm. #1608 S. Gardner Hall