a) Habituation: a learned behavior that results in a loss of responsiveness to a stimulus that has no effect on their fitness because they are meaningless and provide no new information. It allows the animal to focus on only the stimuli that increase their fitness, like ones that signal the presence of food a mate, or real danger.
EX: A bird recognizes alarm calls from members of their species that warn them of danger. They learn to stop responding to these calls once they see that the calls are not followed by an attack or any danger.
- b) Imprinting: It
- is a behavior that is learned and becomes innate. A new behavior is learned during a critical/sensitive period in the animals’ life. It then becomes a lifetime behavioral response to an object or individual. The imprinting stimulus is an innate response that is directed to the first object the animal encounters.
EX: Just hatched graylag geese accept any moving object as their mother. Their critical period only lasts for a day and after that they will not accept anything else as their mother.
c) Spatial Learning: the institution of a memory that reflects the environments spatial structure. It learns things relative to visible landmarks.
EX: Wasps locate their nest by nearby landmarks, like pine cones. When the pine cones were moved to another location that did not contain the nest, the wasp still flew to that area.
d) Associative Learning: It occurs when an animal learns by its ability to associate environmental features with another. There is classical conditioning where a stimulus becomes associated with a particular outcome, like when a bell rings a dogs mouth will automatically salivate because they think food is coming. There is also operant conditioning where an animal connects a behavior with a particular response, like an award or harm.
EX: A coyote learns to avoid porcupines because when it approached it, it got a face full of quills.