Animal Behavior

Biology lb

Abstract

Animal behavior is predictable. Their behavioral tendencies are influenced by the relationship of its
anatomy to their environment. By observing various forms of life, and associating the mechanism of their
abilities to perform a behavioral action, evolutionary influence thereafter, can be analyzed and deduced
from that point.

Introduction

The science and study of animal behavior involve an enormous array of complicated factors. For
instance, stereotyped responses are unlearned behavioral reactions to some environmental stimulus
predicated upon an organism relationship to its physical environment and anatomy. This obviously begs
the question; is the observable behavior such as, the vertical movements demonstrated by brine shrimp
(marine plankton experiment) or peristaltic movements showed by earthworms (animal behavioral lab
experiment) a form of deliberate taxis or random kinesis? However, to properly be able to address those
questions, it\'s far more important to examine the intricate factors involving the complex interactions
between the effects of environmental stimuli,(dry air for the earthworm and directional light for the brine
shrimp) towards the affected anatomical structure and physiological function of a specific organ system of
those particular animal species. Therefore, I hypothesize, that an !
earthworm will exert random kinetic behavior through peristaltic movement in an arid clinical environment
because, it\'s sensory apparatus (respiratory system) will detect a potential life/death situation precipitated
by the threat of desiccation; whereas, the brine shrimp will demonstrate deliberate vertical movements of
behavioral taxis because, the environmental stimuli of light will be effecting an entirely different sensory
apparatus (ocular nervous ) ofwhich, doesn\'t afford the potential possibility of impending doom. By that,
affording the luxury of stereotypical behavior that can be later linked to environmental fitness. In short, an
animal\'s behavior about a particular type of movement is predicated upon the environmental clues, which
directly influence the innate survival mechanisms of a species or its anatomical configuration with
evolutionary fitness.

However, inasmuch as some forms of animal behavior can be easily be analyzed by a simple stimulus and
response scenario, such as with earthworms and brine shrimp. Others such as the rheotactic behavior of
trout (aquarium field trip) and penguin mating habits (zoo field trip) are far more complicated. These
particular types of animal behavior involve a wider spectrum of coordinated organ systems. For instance,
trouts are migratory fish and posses the additional physical characteristics of using chemorecptors (smell)
too located their initial spawning grounds. Because of this evolutionary/genetic characteristic, they must
swim against currents to be able to maximize their olfactory senses. Although the sense of smell is apart of
the nervous system, the mechanism that coordinates rheotactic behavior is an entirely different nervous
component. Trout like other fish use their mechanoreceptors located in their lateral line system to detect
the movement and direction of water.!
Which solicits the question, if trouts are rheotactic, then why do they need to intermediately break from
the current and swim in a particular pattern? Therefore I hypothesize, which a trout\'s general rheotactic
behavior is predicating upon the coordinated environmental stimulus of an aqueous solute concentration,
ofwhich will confirm olfactory distance, and the lateral line thereafter functions to facilitate in the correct
direction. Consequentially, rheotactic behavior controlled by the lateral line is dependent upon the
chemoreptors of the olfactory senses of a trout. Thus, a trout\'s intermittent behavior during rheotactic
movement is more or less a pause for the benefit of olfactory orientation.

Penguins unlike trout, brine shrimp and earthworms are flightless birds. Because of their physical size,
they inherently have a larger cerebral capacity. This anatomical characteristic complicates the qualitative
analysis of penguin mating behavior tremendously. Largely because, penguins have the physical capacity
of conscious thought, interactive communication immersed in a sheath of innate unlearned behavior.
However, penguins are similar to trout in that, they to are migratory creatures. Thus, penguins like trout
integrate a number of different physiological systems for mating behavior. One of which involves the
coordinated interaction between their endocrine system and nervous system. Therefore I hypothesize, that
male penguins during the mating season are territorially aggressive due to the imbalance of testosterone
within their system, and female penguins are passive and somewhat behaviorally more submissive due to
the higher amounts of estrogen within their sys!
tems. Furthermore, because the endocrine system is