The study of animal behaviour

Three chicken with different appearance
These chickens are hybrids between domesticated chickens and their remote relatives, the junglefowl. Researchers study the relationships between genetics, behaviour and physical properties in birds and other animals. Dominic Wright
Thousands of years of breeding has adapted the dog to a life with humans. Researchers at LiU are seeking new knowledge about the behaviour and well-being of dogs. AleksandarNakic
The personality of animals is one of the research fields that researchers at LiU are interested in. They have, for example, observed that calm cows produce more milk. Louise Hedlund

Ethology is the study of animal behaviour and its underlying causes. At LiU, influential research is carried out into how various genes influence animal behaviour, well-being and personality. Chickens, dogs and animals used in agriculture are typical objects of study.

For many thousands of years, humans have bred dogs, chickens, goats and other animals to make them suitable for use as domestic animals, in a process known as domestication. Adaptation to a life close to humans is associated with differences in the genetic material between the wild and domesticated forms of a species. Researchers at LiU study these genetic differences between domesticated and wild animals in detail in order to understand important questions of animal behaviour, responses to stress and the effects of domestication.

Animal well-being is a further important topic. Researchers at LiU study various aspects of animal husbandry, stress regulation, and the effects of stress in birds and dogs.


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Why do animals differ in personality?

Are differences in personality linked to brain chemicals, such as serotonin and dopamine? Researchers at LiU used human drugs to see if they would change the behaviour of crickets.


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