832333 Behavioural and population ecology

Lecture and seminar
Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Hille, Sabine , Maggini, Ivan
Offered in
Sommersemester 2021
Languages of instruction


To get an overview on behavioural ecology and population ecology and to apprehend and the complexity of animal systems. The first part "population ecology" encompasses the main principles of population growth under different conditions and the choice of methods and analyse and use of models in population estimates. A main aim will be to strengthen the methodological capacity for to 1) estimate population densities and 2) building feasable hypotheses and asking the adequate questions when solving problems in wildlife management.
The second part " behavioural ecology" gives a basic introduction in different phenotypes of behaviour, food search, habitat choice, communication, sexual selection and reproductive biology.
This background will enable the students to do animal population studies but further to critically assess scientific studies and projects and derived management advices
With oral seminars the students will intensively learn to read critically, to sum up, to classify and to present scientific texts and studies and to discuss the the work and interpretation in the braod context of the course.

Previous knowledge expected

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

It is the aim to recognize the complexity of behavioral and population ecology contexts , describe and apply . In the first part of " population ecology " to fundamental principles such as growth of populations to be learned under certain conditions. To provide in-depth studies and arguments in the wildlife biology, population ecology and in management practice , it is necessary to ask the right questions and hypotheses. Building hypothesis is therefore not only the right choice of methods and evaluation procedures (models) an important objective. It is to be learned , how samples are drawn , and is extrapolated to population size , the fishing / recapture methods , Poisson distributions and deviations , as well as complex relationships , the different courses of population developments require .
In the second section " behavioral ecology " the students should learn basic principles of training of behavioral phenotypes , foraging , habitat selection , life history at different applied examples to understand , transmit and apply. Students should learn technical content of English language research articles and to understand and reproduce , they should learn to criticize and to deal with critique . The goal is to learn to critically examine issues and to express this in particular in a scientific discourse in the group. In various roles such as speaker , critic and discussion leaders , students should learn the ability of subjects in different positions to argue to get to the point and to be able to take a stand and summarized .

On the basis of presentations to the students train their skills to understand scientific texts on behavioral ecology and population ecology to reproduce naturally and compressed and critically interpret or defend in the discourse. This should help building their personality
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.