|The Integrative Nature of the Study of Animal Behavior|
|Suzy CP Renn, Erik Zornik. Reed College Biology Department, Portland, OR, United States
Animal Behavior, the study of how and why animals gather, respond to, or generate information in order to interact with each other and the environment, is an inherently integrative endeavor. The integrative nature of Animal Behavior as a discipline, can be described across several axes. Most iconic perhaps is the integration across the 4 areas of questioning posed by Tinbergen (causation, ontogeny, phylogeny, and adaptive value), but one can also be considered to be integrative by taking a comparative approach integrating information from multiple species or even clades. Recently, there has also been a push for researchers to integrate across levels of biological organization from molecular interactions to ecological systems or across different disciplines bringing in computer science, psychology, chemistry, physiology, ecology etc. This interactive poster aims to quantify the current state of the field of Animal Behavior along these axes of integration in order to then ask the degree to and manner by which such integration enhances our research.