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HKU Courses

BIOL 3320/2622 The Biology of Marine Mammals

This course covers the evolutionary biology, ecology, behaviour, and conservation of marine mammals: whales, dolphins and porpoises (cetaceans), seals and walruses (pinnipeds), manatees and dugongs (sirenians) and sea otters. Students will learn the ecology of mammalian life in the aquatic environment, their role in the marine ecosystem, their behavioural complexity and socio-ecology, and the current threats to these animals in the human-dominated world.

© Nana Takanawa

BIOL 4303/2625 Animal Behavior

This course provides an introduction to the field of science that investigates the underlying mechanisms and functions of animal behaviour; the ways in which animals interact with each other, with their physical environment and other organisms; how animals find and defend resources, avoid predators, choose mates, reproduce, and care for their young; how complex animal societies are formed and how behaviour of an individual affects the structure of a population.

© Carmen Or

BIOL 3112/2318A  Marine Mammal Field Course


This course represents a capstone requirement and experiential learning opportunity; it offers a unique hands-on experience in field research of behavioural ecology and conservation of free-ranging cetaceans; it provides students with a fundamental knowledge, skills, and the appreciation of what it takes to design, implement, and effectively run field studies in cetacean ecology, behaviour and conservation, and similar studies of other large and mobile marine vertebrates.

© Carmen Or

© Carmen Or

BIOL 3112/2318D  Animal Behavior Field Course


This course teaches students the ways and means of exploring and understanding animal behaviour.  Conducted in a wildlife sanctuary in Sabah, Malaysia, it exposes students to 'research-in-making' with hands-on participation in field studies of animal behaviour and behavioural ecology.  It will teach students how to build conceptual framework for investigating animal behaviour and how to put this framework into a practice of collecting and analysing data.

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