Congratulations are in order to Professor of Biology Ken Yasukawa, whose years-long writing and editing project has finally come to fruition with the publication of three volumes of Animal Behavior: How and Why Animals Do the Things They Do. The textbooks, according to the publisher, cover “the breadth of the field, addressing causation, development, function, and evolution in a wide range of animals, from invertebrates to humans.”
Yasukawa wrote one chapter, “This Is How We Do It: The Scientific Study of Animal Behavior,” and edited all of the others, wrangling some 54 other authors to write other chapters.
“As is typical in such projects, there were times when I thought it would never happen,” Yasukawa says. “But, in the end, it all worked out.”
The book is unusual, also, in that it’s written for non-experts, Yasukawa explains.
“The approach taken in each chapter is that of Nobel Laureate Niko Tinbergen, who published a seminal paper in 1963 in which he described the four questions that animal behaviorists need to answer,” he says. “How is behavior caused? How does behavior develop? What is the function of behavior? How has behavior evolved?”
Below, Professor Yasukawa with the volumes.