Date of Award:

5-1967

Document Type:

Dissertation

Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department:

Ecology

Advisor/Chair:

Keith L. Dixon

Abstract

A controversy dating from the appearance of Altum's book, Der Vogel und sein Leben, 1868 (Mayr, 1935) is that of the biological function or functions of the territorial behavior in birds. However, attention was not focused upon this problem until the advent of Howard's book, Territory in Bird Life, published in 1920. In a general review of the problem Hinde (1956) discussed several functions of the territory and presented evidence both for and against their importance. The more important of these presumed functions are; (1) limitation of population density; (2) facilitation of pair formation and maintenance of the pair bond; (3) reduction in interference with reproductive activities by other members of the species; (4) provision of an adequate food supply for rearing the young; (5) reduction of loss to predators; (6) reduction of time spent in aggression; and (7) prevention of epidemics.

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