|Teaching method||Contact hours|
|Course coordinator(s)||SA Kingma|
|Lecturer(s)||prof. dr. M Dicke|
|dr. A Kotrschal|
|FC Ribeiro da Cunha|
|prof. dr. M Naguib|
|dr. CHJ van Oers|
|Examiner(s)||prof. dr. M Naguib|
|prof. dr. M Dicke|
Language of instruction:
Assumed knowledge on:
BHE-20303 Animal Behaviour
The course Behavioural Ecology provides insight into how evolution through natural selection shapes behaviour of animals (domestic or wild, vertebrate or invertebrate). The course includes acquiring theoretical knowledge, searching scientific information, critical reading of literature, observation and presentation of results. The acquired knowledge is directly applied in a short research project on captive or wild animals - depending on the opportunities; these can be either invertebrates or vertebrates.
After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- use evolutionary concepts to explain animal behaviour;
- define and apply the four questions of Tinbergen in behavioural issues;
- apply the basic behavioural and ecological skills of observation and (statistical) data analysis;
- plan, perform, and finalize a small behavioural ecological research project;
- present the results of a research project in a scientific report and oral presentation
The course is a full-time block course of 4 weeks. The first two weeks are centred on theoretical issues. For lectures the book 'An introduction to Behavioural Ecology' by Davies et al. is used. In the lectures the theoretical background of the relation between animal behaviour and natural selection is explained, and examples of Behavioural Ecology research are discussed.
During the 3th and 4th week students work in pairs or small teams on a mini-research project. In the first weeks, students can select a topic for this project. Students will develop a research question and integrate it with theory they got acquainted with in the first two weeks and finalise the working plan using scientific information from the scientific literature (literature study). Through discussions with the supervisor(s) the research plan will be finalized in week 2. Experiments will be executed subsequently, and students will learn to analyse the data, a report is made and the results are presented.
Evaluation will be based on a written examination and report.
N.B. Davies, J.R Krebs, S.A. West (2012). An Introduction to Behavioural Ecology 4th Edition.
|Restricted Optional for:||MBI||Biology||MSc||D: Spec. D - Ecology||6WD|
|MBI||Biology||MSc||B: Spec. B - Development and Adaptation||6WD|
|MAS||Animal Sciences||MSc||F: Spec. F - Animal Ecology||6WD|
|Restricted Optional for:||WUEBC||BSc Minor Ecology and Biological Control of Insects||6WD|