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Behavioural Ecology

An Evolutionary Perspective on Behaviour

Edited by Etienne Danchin, Luc-Alain Giraldeau, and Frank Cézilly

Publication Date - April 2008

ISBN: 9780199206292

912 pages

Retail Price to Students: $169.99


Why are some species monogamous while others are polygamous? Why are males usually more ornamented than females? What makes one organism the hunter and another the hunted? Why do some creatures stick together in groups while others prefer to go it alone? Can we talk of animal culture? Behavioural Ecology provides a fascinating insight into the evolutionary and ecological processes that underpin animal behaviour.

Opening with an overview of the evolutionary and methodological framework of behavioural ecology, the book goes on to explore behaviours in terms of the selective pressures involved in their design. It addresses natural selection, sexual selection, and gene selection, before closing with an investigation of the human impact on behavioural ecology.

Featuring chapters written by university teachers, each with research expertise in their respective fields, Behavioural Ecology has been molded by Danchin, Giraldeau, and Cezilly to be consistent while exhibiting the qualities of a multi-author book. Behavioural Ecology offers a fresh, contemporary account of a field re-invigorated by advances in the last decade, making it the ideal teaching and learning text.


  • A fresh, new textbook to reinvigorate the teaching of behavioral ecology
  • Contributions from research experts coupled to meticulous editing provide a text with all the qualities of a multi-authored book without the usual defects
  • Full coverage of topics including conservation, host-parasite interactions, dispersal, and social foraging and sex-ratio games, as well as hormones and behavior, gives the book a truly contemporary flavor, and takes students to the frontiers of the subject.
  • Unique coverage of the fundamental building blocks of behavioral ecology make this the ideal resource for students coming to the subject for the first time
  • Online Resource Center features downloadable figures for lecturers and web links for students, to enhance the value of the text as a teaching and learning tool

About the Author(s)

Etienne Danchin is a lecturer in the Evolution and Biological Diversity Group at the Université Paul Sabatier, Toulouse, France.

Luc-Alain Giraldeau is a professor in the Department of Biological Science at the Universite du Quebec in Montreal, Canada.

Frank Cézilly is a professor in the Life Sciences Department at the Universite de Bourgogne, France.

Table of Contents

    Introduction E. Danchin, L. Giraldeau, & F. Cézilly
    PART ONE: The Behavioural Ecology Approach
    1. A History of Behavioural Ecology, F. Cézilly
    2. Fundamental Concepts in Behavioural Ecology, E. Danchin, L. Giraldeau, & F. Cezilly
    3. Testing Hypotheses in Behavioural Ecology, E. Danchin, L. Giraldeau, & F. Cezilly
    PART TWO: Growing and Exploiting the Environment
    4. Behavioural Genetics and Syndromes, B. Sinervo & J. Clobert
    5. Development of the Phenotype: An Evolutionary Approach, A.M. Dufty & E. Danchin
    6. Solitary Foraging Strategies, L. Giraldeau
    7. Social Foraging, L. Giraldeau
    8. Choosing Where to Reproduce - Breeding Habitat Selection, T. Boulinier, M. Mariette, & E. Danchin
    9. Evolution of Dispersal, J.Clobert, M. de Fraipont, & E. Danchin
    PART THREE: Sex and Behaviour
    10. Sexual Selection: Another Evolutionary Process, E. Danchin & F. Cézilly
    11. Mating Systems and Parental Care, E. Danchin & F. Cezilly
    12. Sex Allocation, M. Chapuisat
    PART FOUR: Interacting with Others
    13. Group Living: Hypotheses and Controversies, E. Danchin & L. Giraldeau
    14. The Adaptive Evolution of Social Traits, J. Legalliard & R. Férrière
    15. Communication and the Evolution of Signals, M. Théry & P. Heeb
    16. Intimate Interactions, G. Sorci & F. Cézilly
    PART FIVE: Humans: Applications and Implications
    17. Behavioural Ecology and Conservation, A.P. Moller, E. Danchin, & L. Giraldeau
    18. The Behavioural Ecology of Humans, A.P. Moller, & E. Danchin
    19. Information and Cultural Evolution: A New Theme in Behavioural Ecology, E. Danchin, L. Giraldeau, & R.H. Wagner
    List of References

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