Animal Behavior - Short Essay

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Conflict is very common in the animal kingdom. In many cases conflict between animals is resolved by actual fighting, but there are also many examples of fighting, some of which end up in the death of the opponent. From observations of animal conflict it is clear that some circumstances are more conductive to fighting than others. Animals do not always fight when given the opportunity and some individuals vary in the readiness with which they resort to fighting. Such differences in agonistic behavior often reflect an animal′s chance of winning or getting injured and the importance of the issue concerned.

The benefits of fighting are quite obvious in many cases. The winner can gain exclusive use of a resource such as a food source or may obtain exclusive mating rights whereas losers gain either nothing or only partial access. The more aggressive an animal is, the more benefits it is likely to gain, but if an animal is too aggressive it might face unacceptably high costs, such as serious injury, so the animal must weigh up the relative costs and benefits of its action and choose an optimum level of aggression. If the costs are too high, and the benefits are too low; avoiding a fight may be preferable to competing. In other cases it may be worth fighting vigorously for a valuable resource.

I think that any race, species, or other group of animals feels morally free to torture, injure, psychologically brutalize, capture, destroy, genocide, and generally toy with the lives of less important species while still feeling morally superior by virtue of the fact that they would never do such horrible things to their own kind. Particularly, animals would never kill anyone of their own kind, and look down on other races, who prove their barbarity through killing each other. Animals don't necessarily think they're morally superior because they don't kill each other. They just think they're better, and the fact that they don't kill each other is indirect proof of that. If...
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