Abstract and Summary
Many of the assumptions and predictions of classical ethology concern the nature of the physiological mechanisms underlying behavior. Navanax, because of its easily studied nervous system, may be useful in testing the assumptions and predictions of such models. The ethogram of Navanax includes 28 action patterns. Navanax also has 4 distinct “drives”: feeding, reproduction as a male, reproduction as a female and spawning, each activating a specific sequence of action patterns. Competition between simultaneously activated drives appears to be resolved at the motor level, in accordance with the “motor pandemonium model” (Dawkins 1976). The behavioral sequences involved in predation and cannibalism are described. Cannibalism in Navanax occurs in response to chance encounters with conspecifics, rather than as a result of active trail-following. We conclude that the behavior of Navanax corresponds closely to classical ethological models and that Navanax may prove useful in testing ethological ideas about physiological mechanisms of behavior.