Animal Behavior Lab Report

1194 words - 5 pages

1Animal Behavior - How and Why They Do What They DoWesley Trail, Kristina Medero, Sara Kahl, & Evan CowlesAbstract:Observing animal behavior is a vital way to determine how and why certain animals behave the way they do. This particular experiment focused on observing sowbugs, properly known as Armadillidium vulgare. These insects usually live in moist, dark areas. The sowbugs were observed on three different occasions in three different environments, which were light vs. dark, dry vs. wet, and light/wet vs. dark/dry. Based on collected results, sowbugs tend to stay in areas that are dark and wet; however, when given the choice between light/wet vs. dark dry, the sowbugs favored the dark/dry area. The favorability displayed by the sowbugs shows that they value dark areas primarily.Our hypothesis for the first task stated that the sowbugs would not exhibit phototactic behavior and migrate to dark areas. Our hypothesis for the second task stated that the sowbugs would exhibit hydrotactic by migrating to wet areas. Our final hypothesis stated that sowbugs preferred a light/wet area to a dark/dry area. Research shows that sowbugs tend to favor wet environments over dry environments. Sowbugs are also known to be in the order Isopoda, which are the only widespread crustacean to successfully transform from an aquatic lifestyle to a more terrestrial lifestyle. With the given information, sowbugs are known to prefer wet areas to dry areas.Each three comparisons took a total of twelve minutes to complete. The sowbugs were placed in petri dishes where the environments were created. Filter paper and water were used to imitate wet areas, lamps were used to represent light areas, and a paper was used to cover half of the petri dish to create a dark environment.Introduction:Innate behaviors are behaviors that have been inherited or passed down from parent to offspring. They are known behaviors instilled at birth and do not have to be learned or acquired. Other behaviors are learned behaviors; for example, dolphins must learn more efficient strategies to capture fish to eat. The genotype of an animal codes for its phenotype, which displays physical characteristics. An animal's behavior is ultimately how it responds and interacts with its environment. A taxi is the orientation of an animal that has been changed relative to a given stimulus.With an understanding of sowbug ecology, we can make predictions about how they might behave when exposed to different environments such as light vs. dark or wet vs. dry. Sowbugs are insects that occur in moist, dark areas, such as under dead logs where they can eat detritus; hence, they are decomposer-feeding organisms. These organisms can be aquatic or land bearing. They are classified in the order Isopoda and suborder Oniscidea. An isopod is an order of crustaceans, such as sowbugs or woodlice. "Isopods are the only widespread crustacean to have efficaciously evolved from an aquatic environmental order to terrestrial...

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