This guide has been developed to get you started on your research for animal behavior. Your professor will want you to do some background reading in reference books as well as perform a search of the scientific literature which is published in scholarly journals on your topic. To this end, you will be asked to prepare an annotated bibliography.
Please consult the following books and databases in order to locate scholarly sources, especially primary sources, pertaining to your chosen topic.
Please be advised that while Web search engines such as Google will point you to infinite numbers of pages dealing with animal behavior, most of this information is not research level material. Your Professor may supply you with appropriate Websites for additional information.
For further assistance on preparing annotated bibliographies, please consult the following:
Preparing an Annotated Bibliography (Geisel Library at Saint Anselm College)
Zool 250 - Sample Annotated Bibliography
For further discussion of Primary vs Secondary source information please consult the following:
The Literature of Biology (Humboldt State University Library)
Contains a great chart outlining the scientific/research publication cycle.
Types of Scientific Articles (UNC Libraries)
The following reference books are considered secondary source material and will supply you with basic background readings on your topics.
Ref QL45.2 .A56
Great for overviews and illustrations
Dictionary of Zoology
Ref QL9 .D5
Encyclopedia of Life
The Encyclopedia of Life, launched in 2008, is a global cooperative effort to fully catalog and describe more than 1.8 million species.
Encyclopedia of Mammals
Ref QL701.2 .E53
Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia **
From the Gale Virtual Reference Library
By far the most detailed; awesome illustrations and great for additional references
Grzimek's Encyclopedia of Mammals
Ref QL701 .G7913
Princeton Encyclopedia of Mammals
Ref QL701.2 .P75 2009
Other Databases which may be helpful for locating Secondary Sources are:
The library Catalog for finding books in Geisel Library. Search by keyword (e.g., black bears) if you are unsure of the title you are looking for. Most biology books are located on the Upper Level of the library. Some, but not all, books on animal behavior are in the QL750-795 section.
WorldCat to search the collections of libraries worldwide. Find a book in this database, and, if not owned by SAC, you can request it from Interlibrary Loan with one click. Your
book(s) will be available for pickup in the library within 7-14 days. Ask for help in using this database at the reference desk, in person, or online at Ask a Librarian.
"The research paper published in a scientific journal represents the most important 'primary' source of information. Over 80% of biological research is communicated in this format. The first scientific journal was established in 1665 and today there are over 2,800 scholarly journals in biology." (Humboldt State University Library) The library has access to approximately 500 biological journals and many are in full-text. Of these, approximately 28 journals (PDF/13KB) pertain specifically to the subject of Animal Behavior. The following databases will provide you with access to specific articles within these and other journals.
Biological Sciences (CSA)
This interdisciplinary database offers abstracts and citations to a wide range of research in biomedicine, biotechnology, zoology and ecology, and some aspects of agriculture and veterinary science. Get access to literature from over 6,000 serials, as well as conference proceedings, technical reports, monographs and selected books and patents. Supplies links to full-text formats when available.
This is a collection of online journals from many disciplines, including Botany, Ecology and General Science. Please note: While this database goes back to the very first volume of these journal titles, it does not cover the most recent 3-5 years of a title. User Guide
Other Databases or search engines which may be helpful are:
Academic Search Premier
A broad index providing abstracts and some full-text for a range of academic areas, including biology. Contains some primary source information.
Google Scholar indexes a subset of scholarly literature in all fields. Coverage appears to be strong in the area of biology, especially for scholarship that is available online. More information about Google Scholar.
Provides citations to articles pertaining to the psychology of animal behavior. User Guide
When searching the databases noted above, you will notice a WebBridge button appearing at the end of most citations. Clicking here will let you know whether we own an item in electronic or print form. If we don't have access to the item, click on the link called Geisel Library Inter-Library Loan (ILL). WebBridge automatically completes an interlibrary loan form for you.
However, please read the WebBridge info carefully. If the book or article is already available at Saint Anselm College, you will not be able to obtain it through Interlibrary Loan.
Nancy "Sam" Urtz (firstname.lastname@example.org or ext. 7307)
My office is on the Main Level of the Geisel Library. Just ask for "Sam"!