Lorenz's Research - Attachment

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  • Imprinting
    • Lorenz's Animal Research
      • Evaluation
        • Generalis-ability to humans
          • Difficult to generalise findings on birds to humans. Mammalian attachment is different from that in birds
          • Mammalian mothers show more emotional attachment to young than do birds.
          • Mammals may be able to form attachments at any time, albeit less easily than in infancy.
          • Meaning it isn't appropiate to generalise any of Lorenz's ideas to humans
        • Some of Lorenz's observations have been questioned
          • The idea that imprinting has  a permanent effect on mating behaviour.
          • Guiton et al (1966) found that chickens imprinted on yellow washing up gloves would try to mate with them as adults
            • However, they eventually learned to prefer mating with other chickens, mating behaviour is not as permanent as Lorenz suggested
      • Sexual Imprinting
        • Lorenz also investigated the relationship between imprinting and adult preferences
        • Birds that imprinted on a human would often display courtship behaviour towards humans
        • (1952) Peacock hatched - first thing saw was giant tortoises,. As an adult  only direct courtship towards other giant tortoises
        • Concluded that the bird had undergone sexual imprinting
    • Lorenz first observed the phenomenon of imprinting when he was a child
    • A neighbour had given him a newly hatched duckling that followed him around
  • Findings
    • Incubator group followed Lorenz everywhere
    • Lorenz's Animal Research
      • Evaluation
        • Generalis-ability to humans
          • Difficult to generalise findings on birds to humans. Mammalian attachment is different from that in birds
          • Mammalian mothers show more emotional attachment to young than do birds.
          • Mammals may be able to form attachments at any time, albeit less easily than in infancy.
          • Meaning it isn't appropiate to generalise any of Lorenz's ideas to humans
        • Some of Lorenz's observations have been questioned
          • The idea that imprinting has  a permanent effect on mating behaviour.
          • Guiton et al (1966) found that chickens imprinted on yellow washing up gloves would try to mate with them as adults
            • However, they eventually learned to prefer mating with other chickens, mating behaviour is not as permanent as Lorenz suggested
      • Sexual Imprinting
        • Lorenz also investigated the relationship between imprinting and adult preferences
        • Birds that imprinted on a human would often display courtship behaviour towards humans
        • (1952) Peacock hatched - first thing saw was giant tortoises,. As an adult  only direct courtship towards other giant tortoises
        • Concluded that the bird had undergone sexual imprinting
    • Control group (hatched in natural environment) followed mother
    • When both groups were mixed the control group continued to follow their mother and the incubator group followed Lorenz
    • This is known as imprinting, attach to the first moving thing they see.
    • Lorenz identified a critical period in which imprinting needs to take place.
      • Depending on the species this can be as brief as a few hours after hatching.
        • If it doesn't occur within that time Lorenz found they do not attach themselves to a mother figure

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