E.6d Food, Sleep, Sex

03/03/2014 § 2 Comments

If you’d look at the title, you’ll see the one thing I want more than anything in the world but can never get because I’m a lonely loser: SSSSSSSSSSSSLEEP. (gotcha)


Foraging is the search/hunt for food amongst animals. Different animals take into account different factors when they forage, for example the bluegill sunfish classifies their prey into small, medium, and larger sizes. If the target is small (of low density), then it would eat a lot of that size, if only to gain enough energy/food. If the target is of high density, it would select a larger size, to get the most energy through one individual. If the prey is of medium density, it would choose large prey over small prey.

Another word for us is courtship, which is a complex interplay of two sets of communications. Courtship is how potential mates inform each other and read each other’s signals to know whether or not they’ll mate. Courting stimuli is normally specific to a species, allowing individuals to breed only within its own species. Factors that therefore affect courtship include: health, size, aggressiveness, resources, adaptive abilities, and parental investment.

Hey, that sounds like human.


DBQ page 355:

1) The flight lengths are shorter in autumn, measuring between 1-2 hours. Before sunrise, there is little to no activity and most flights happen before sunset. All flights end by 2100.


  • a) During the summer there are many flights per day compared to during the autumn, when there is only one flight per day. However in both summer and autumn, all flights seem to start after sunset and end before sunrise.
  • b) There might be a difference in behaviour because the environment changes with the season, making foraging harder during the autumn, which is why more flights happen during the summer and less happen during the autumn simply because there isn’t enough food. Also, summer could be mating season, huehuehue.

3) The bats are an example of rhythmical variation because they are nocturnal, meaning they forage at night and sleep in the mornings (aka my life). That’s daily; annually, more activity happens during the summer compared to in the autumn, when things calm down for the bats and they only fly once a day.

E.6b Reciprocal Altruism

03/03/2014 § Leave a comment

Now, if the whole world could be reciprocally altruistic, then we’d have a lot less problems, wouldn’t we.


As its name suggests, reciprocal altruism is a type of altruism. (Wow.) Simply put, this type of behaviour, again, benefits mostly the recipient and comes at a cost to the donor. The difference between reciprocal altruism and kin selection is that the former happens between non-relative individuals. Like friends among human beings. Strange creatures, those humans.

The best example of reciprocal altruism can be seen in vampire bats, ofmgkfgk, they are so cute. Female vampire bats (I have no idea what happened to the male vampire bats but there were none in the videos) have to eat constantly due to their high metabolism and high surface area to volume ratio. If they don’t eat for more than 2½ days, then they’re going back in the coffin.

(ha ha)

So what happens is that each female vampire bat has a best friend (like you and me) who, if they weren’t able to forage anything for the night, will willingly regurgitate some of their own food so they can survive long enough to find food the next night. In response to this, if that friend needs help later, the original female vampire bat should also reciprocate and also give the friend food. Sometimes they don’t but those cheats are caught and banished faster than they can say “Dracula.”

E.6c Kin Selection

01/03/2014 § Leave a comment

If you wanted to be in the hall of fame, why can’t you just say so?



Well, okay, let’s see. What is kin selection. Kin selection is a type of altruistic behaviour found in few species, not including humans. Humans are very into kin selection, if you don’t mind my informality. The downside of kin selection is that you don’t get to pass on as many of your genes into the next generation, but by choosing to support at least members of the species that you share genes with, at least some of your genes (the ones shared by that kin) will be passed on to the next generation. Altruistic behaviour is (sort of silly) disadvantageous to the performer because it’s costly to them but benefits the recipient. “Survivor of the fittest” plays little to no role in altruism and kin selection.

One example of kin selection can be found in the silver-backed jackal (but on the projector they look yellow). Instead of leaving to start its own pack (family), a young male (or female? Actually I’m not sure) would stay to help its parents with their family and increase their chances of survival. The yearling won’t be able to see as much of its genes in the next generation as it would if it started its own family but at the same time, there’s no guarantee that an inexperienced yearling would even be able to start its own family. (Costs and benefits, yo.) Clearly altruism has more disadvantages to the donor than advantages, so it’s silly right? Right.

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