About the Animal Behaviour Zone

Hippopotamus

Hippos use the smell of their dung to attract a mate, image by BS Thurner Hof for Wikimedia

Bee

Bees do a little dance to show their friends where the food is, image by Braboowi for Wikimedia

Animal behaviour is all about what animals are doing and why they are doing it. People have been watching animals for a very long time.

Thousands of years ago, people watched how animals behaved to help with hunting and taming animals. These days, lots of people like watching how animals behave for different reasons.

Scientists who study animal behaviour try to work out why animals are behaving in a particular way. There are certain common ‘problems’ that animals need to solve, such as eating, drinking, protecting themselves from predators and reproduction. Much of animal behaviour is based on solving these problems.

Some animals behave in very interesting ways; from bees doing a special dance to show their hive-mates where the best flowers are, to hippos using the smell of their dung to attract a mate. Yuck.

In the Animal Behaviour Zone you’ll meet five scientists with very exciting jobs. There are scientists looking at bird behaviour to reduce wildlife risks from wind farms. There are scientists looking at what animals in the deep sea eat. We also have scientists looking at how ants can organize itself into a huge swarm. And scientists trying to see what happens when two different types of hares meet in the same place.

 

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