Zoology: What is it?


By, Crystal S. Kauffman, Staff Writer

©Crystal S. Kauffman
©Crystal S. Kauffman

The study of the animal’s behavior has lead to the well known theory of “natural selection”. Therefore, each animal has personal needs that must be met, in order to survive in nature or in captivity. According to Biology-Online, the study of zoology is a branch on biology, which studies different animals and the way they live their life. Most zoologists believe that studying animals and their behavior can teach us a lot about humans and their behavior. Some notable zoologists are: Aristotle, Charles Darwin, Jeff Corwin, or Steve and Terry Irwin of the Australia Zoo.

These scientists are studying their breeding habits, personality traits, and what they eat on a daily basis. The zoologist actually studies the animal’s home, in their own habitat or in captivity at a zoo or other place. According to Bolhus & Giraldeau, zoology was first studied by British and German laboratories, in the nineteenth century and it has evolved over the years. Many scientists have studied the theory of “natural selection”, which was researched by many different passionate scientists. Each one has strived to become one with the animal, but they also learn to have a healthy respect for each animal they studied.

Their work and passion is allowing us to understand the animal’s behavior in stressful and social situations. The zoologists are learning how animals relate to their own kind, to other animals, and to humans. According to Bolhus & Giraldeau, by learning how they are raising their offspring, wildlife organizations can save many wounded animals. A zoologist job’s is very important and many zoos hire them, in order to care for the animals. They study how animals behave, especially when they are friendly or when they feel threatened.

There are many classifications of animals that are being studied by scientists, who are called zoologists. According to Biology-Online, most spiders are classified separate from insects, since their anatomy is built differently. Some zoologist study Paleontology, in order to learn what extinct animals and fossils were like, when they roamed the earth. Others study the Entomology, which is learning about insects and their behaviors.

Some scientist study Mammalogy, which includes animals that carry and give birth to their young. Most mammals feed their baby milk and they are warm-blooded, like humans and dolphins. According to Biology-Online, some animals are classified as Herpetology, since they are reptiles or amphibians. These animals are cold-blooded and lay eggs at birth, like turtles or frogs. Actually, snakes and lizards are studied under this branch of zoology, since they lay eggs are cold blooded as well

However, some animals are called arachnids and the scientific name for their branch of zoology is Arachnology. Most people associate this branch of study with spiders that have more than six legs and lay eggs in a sack. According to Bolhus & Giraldeau, the different behaviors of animals are studied by an Ethologist, who also documents each species behavior. Scientist called Ornithologist, actually study birds, by examining how they live and what they eat.

Another type of scientist is an Ichthyology, they study fish and how they survive in the ocean and fresh water without air. According to Biology-Online, a zoologist mainly studies the behavior of animals and how they live in their own natural habitat. A zoologist can choose to study all types of animals or they may pick a branch, which allows them to study one type of species like snakes or birds.

Basically, there are mainly two types of animals; one is herbivores or a plant eaters and the other is a carnivore or a meat eater. According to Biology-Online, these scientists study the different species of animals and their unique habits. Some zoologists are studying a specific animal’s habitat, but some are studying a variety of animals and their behavior. They each observe and chart the interesting stuff they learn, in order to teach future generations all about these amazing animals.
Reference:

Biology-Online.org (2015) Branches of Biology
Retrieved from the World Wide Web on August 2, 2015
http://www.biology-online.org/dictionary/Branches_of_biology
Bolhus, J & Giraldeau, L. (Unknown) The Study of Animal Behavior
Retrieved from the World Wide Web on August 2, 2015

Click to access Bolhuis_sample%20chapters_Behaviour%20of%20animals.pdf

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