Animal Behaviors

By Zoey Kay

Colorful Plumage

In many species the males are more colorful than the females. This is called colorful plumage. Males use this animal behavior to attract a mate. Colorful plumage is very common in birds.

One species of bird that uses colorful plumage is the pheasant. The male pheasant uses its bright colors to attract a female.

Herding

One of the main reasons animals herd is to be safe. Animals herd so that they can protect themselves.

Giraffe's are one of the many animals that herd. A herd of giraffe's is called a tower. In a tower there is no leader. As a result of their height, a herd of 20 giraffe's may spread out over half a mile, because they can see each other from long distances.

Pheromones

Animals use pheromones to mark territory, leave a scent, or attract a mate.

The Canada Lynx uses pheromones to attract a mate or mark its territory by urinating on trees. They also have scent glands in their paws, so when they leave claw marks somewhere, they leave a little bit of their scent behind.

Gift Presenting

Animals use gift presenting to attract a mate and show affection. A common gift animals give is food.

Many male flies wrap their prey in silk after they catch it and give it to a female fly to attract a mate. In addition, male spiders in South America inject pheromones into their silk wrapped gift.

Vocalization

Many animals produce sounds to communicate with other animals. Animals use vocalization for warning calls and attracting a mate.

Many male frogs sing to attract a female. When air flows over the vocal chords, the vocal sacs inflate. The vocal sacs can inflate to be as big as the frog in some species!

Dance

Animals dance to attract a female or communicate to other animals. Animals will also dance to scare off predators.


Male peacock spiders dance to attract a female. The males will perform a dance for a female spider of any species. But there is a price to pay for a poor performance; If the female decides that the male spider is not an ideal mate, it kills the male and eats it!

Bioluminescene

Bioluminescene is an animals ability to produce light. It is produced through a chemical reaction. Bioluminescene can be used to lure prey, communicate, and warn predators.

The Aequorea Victoria jellyfish has a blue colored bioluminescene. The main reason the jellyfish uses it's bioluminescence is to scare off predators, but jellyfish also use it to attract a mate.

Nest Building

In some species males and females build nests , so the females can lay eggs. Nests can be made out of many different materials, and can be all different shapes and sizes.


The termite has a very unique nest. Termite nests are called mounds, and they can grow to be 5 meters or higher! The mounds can take four to five years to build. The queen of the mound produces hundreds of millions of termite eggs to sustain the population.