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MB5430 - Behaviour of Marine Animals

[Offered in even-numbered years]

Credit points: 3
Year: 2012
Student Contribution Band: Band 4
Administered by: School of Marine & Tropical Biology

Available to Graduate Diploma of Research Methods, Graduate Certificate of Research Methods, Graduate Diploma of Science and Masters of Applied Science students. Also available to Masters of Development Practice, Graduate Certificate of Development Practice, Graduate Diploma of Development Practice and Master of Science students.

A major part of this subject will be a field excursion to Orpheus Island during which students will get hands-on experience collecting behavioural information using a range of underwater techniques.Principles of animal behaviour will be overviewed in an evolutionary framework. Emphasis will be on topics pertinent to the establishment and maintenance of marine communities. The subject structure will include: methods for studying behaviour in marine systems, ontogenetic development of behaviour, habitat selection, animal communication, social spacing, mating systems, foraging behaviour, predator avoidance and behavioural flexibility.Specific topics will include: evolution of behaviour; development of behaviour; optimality; habitat selection and larval behaviour; visual, chemical and electrical communication; territoriality and competition; mating systems and sexual selection; parental care; modes of predator avoidance; mimicry; individuality of behaviour.

Learning Outcomes

  • gain an understanding of the intellectual foundation of marine behavioural studies;
  • gain experience in the methods used in marine behaviour studies;
  • introduce students to the diversity of behaviours that characterise marine animals and their importance;
  • introduce students to the empirical basis of marine behaviour studies.
Students enrolling in this subject should have an undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline or have acquired equivalent knowledge through other study. They should have an excellent understanding of mathematics (including statistics), ecological principles and invertebrate biology, and should have completed BZ5001.


Townsville, Study Period 10, Block
Census Date 13-Dec-2012
Face to face teaching 23-Nov-2012 to 02-Dec-2012
Coord/Lect: <Person not found>.
Special Assessment Requirements: Assessment by two reports and two seminars
Restrictions: An enrolment quota applies to this offering.

Note: Minor variations might occur due to the continuous Subject quality improvement process, and in case of minor variation(s) in assessment details, the Subject Outline represents the latest official information.