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Flashcards in Animal Behaviour-Applications Deck (13)
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How can we learn from termite behaviour?

Termites can build very complex systems in a decentralised way, independent animals using local rules. People are looking to build robots to work autonomously and are therefore looking at this behaviour


How does looking at mating systems and social networks help us learn about disease?

Looking at polygamous and serial monogamous species helps us learn about STIs- speed, peak etc.
Social behaviour explains the age variation in a flu pandemic- gathering young children together means transmission was fast
Malaria transmission and the disruption of it can be worked out from how animals interact and vectors pass it on


How can the study of badgers and their social structure help us understand the prevention of spread of TB in cows?

Simply culling badgers actually increases aggression between them due to the increased likelihood of bumping into an unfamiliar badger. This therefore has the opposite effect of reducing TB spread. It may be more beneficial to protect the cow food source from badgers e.g prevent cows from going up to hedge line where badgers are or prevent 'head rubbing' on setts or exclude badgers from farm buildings


How can our agricultural choices impact species such as bees?

Our pesticides may affect their foraging behaviour as pesticides can have sub-lethal effects which bees remember-> decline in pop size?


How can it be beneficial for agriculture to learn about pig behaviour?

To improve their quality of life which in turn reduces aggression between pigs and therefore makes them more productive (fewer injuries/better health etc)- e.g add straw beds for foraging


How can understanding the range in which cows cover during foraging for example be beneficial for farmers?

It means they can understand which sort of farmland the cows are most suited to and match these


How can understanding panda reproduction be good for conservation of the species?

Understanding that males increasing their mating behaviour if they smell another males' scent so increasing competition could actually aid reproduction so producing an artificial scent would be good if another male is not held in captive


How can imprinting be important to crane chicks?

They need to learn certain behaviours such as who to follow during migration and how to forage. In captivity, humans sometimes dress up as birds to help them instead of the chicks copying human behaviour. When released into the wild, they can follow other birds as they can recognise them


How did geo-tagging help with basing gas plants?

Tagging of deer helped see their migration route and therefore enabled to developers to plan where their plants were going to be placed in order to avoid disruption of this route. This was also done in Gannets and how wind turbines may affect them. The heigh at which they are flying is important and that is being studied now


How does understanding the behaviour of ants help with the conservation of big blue butterflies?

Larvae of the butterfly are laid on ants. Therefore understanding the ants' needs is very important to re-introduce or conserve butterflies. Ants need warm slopes and close cropped turf to create the right microclimate. If the conditions are not right, other poor host ants will dominate and so the larvae will not survive. Once this was realised, implementation of grazing a burning helped successfully re-introduce the blue butterfly


What is activity time-budget analysis and how does the recording of this help?

How long an animal spends doing a particular activity (e.g foraging) and re-colonised groups can be compared to reference groups to see if they are being successful e.g Murres on Devil's slide rock


Federal horse grazing is a problem so how can it be managed?

Either have to remove individuals and place them in domestic situations or using contraceptive implants in the females. Female behaviour was unchanged but males exhibited slightly less herding (that's all though so quite an effective method)


How can humans disturb the natural behaviour of species such as mice?

Artificial light can mean that mice do not stay in the same area for long when being disturbed resulting in lower intake of energy- helps with planning where we should develop