Institute for Max-Planck for behavior physiology

the institute for Max-Planck for behavior physiology became at the 1. April 1954 by resolution of the senate of the Max-Planck company based, starting from February 1956 in Upper Bavaria on free corridor builds again and to 16. September 1958 inaugurated. Selected the place name sea-meadows for the developed small researcher village the two directors of establishment Erich of get and Konrad Lorenz as area-describing address. Institut became 30. November 1999 officially closed, nevertheless is financed a small “remainder troop” still until 2006 by the Max-Planck company.

Since 1998 the buildings in sea-meadows accommodate the institute for Max-Planck for Ornithologie, which already came out from two mechanisms belonging since longer to the Max-Planck company: on the one hand from the “bird control room Radolfzell “, which was already created 1901 as “ bird control room Rossitten “, starting from 1923 of the emperor William company belonged and 1946 to Radolfzell their work again took up; on the other hand from the 1991 department of the Ornithologen and behavior researcher Eberhard Gwinner furnished in sea-meadows.


to guest in

the surge tank 1,3

the beginnings in sea-meadows 2 research topics 3 literature [ work on ], when Konrad the Lorenz gets for the first time in February 1936 after a lecture in the Harnack house in Berlin with Erich of met.

first plans

in the discussion about the speaking recognized both fast that they - although with good reason different methodology - examined probably close related procedures in the central nervous system. While Lorenz had made it's duty, to intact, animal as naturally as possible held spontaneously arising movement ways and of them ererbte regularities to study, analyzed of get at that time coordinated movements, which are released from the isolated nervous system to elimination of the afferent courses.

The results of both research directions could - accepted reflex chain theory in the contradiction to at that time in Germany far away and owing to completely different understanding of behavior than usual in the Behaviorismus - when a system of impulse samples are interpreted, which develop in the nerve cells spontaneously and also without attraction too frequently complicated from the outside instinct movements lead.

One of Konrad the Lorenz frequently according to anecdote sat then 25-year old Erich of gets with that Vortag to 17 repeated. February 1936 coincidentally beside its wife Margarete Lorenz. Mrs. Lorenz could report to her man therefore of it, her unknown quantity neighbour had seized itself during the lecture always the head and had murmured „idiot “, if Lorenz tried to explain its behavior observations with a sequence from reflexes to. Allegedly has of get after the lecture ten minutes needed to convince Lorenz from „the Idiotie “the reflex chain theory to - these ten minutes were for Konrad Lorenz as it were mythologische beginning of the subject Ethologie in Germany.

to guest in the surge tank

1948 Erich received from gets a department in the institute for Max-Planck for sea biology in Wilhelmshaven, for Konrad Lorenz 1951 a branch office of this institute in the surge tank by baron Gisbert Friedrich Christian von Romberg in Buldern (Westphalia) was furnished; William Thorpe and Nikolaas Tinbergen had at that time prepared a Professur for the Lorenz to the University of Bristol, and the Max-Planck company countered this offer now with its own research centre. While of the sense physiology gets in Wilhelmshaven and the behavior of fish examined, the ponds of lock became Buldern the birth place of a goose colony, by which Konrad the Lorenz admits internationally became. The descendants of this colony moved several times with Konrad Lorenz and remained for it up to its death also spatially near.

This „research centre for comparative behavior research “(Lorenz “admits also as „station) was however only a short existence vergönnt, there after the early death of the generous house gentleman Gisbert von Romberg in June 1952 its inheritance particularly in the hunt interested was not even and this with the verhaltenskundlichen field studies of the Max-Planck researchers harmony ores.

Nevertheless Konrad Lorenz had coworkers for the first time in Buldern in its career adequate and sufficient possibilities for employment for itself and its, meant his leading place in the Max-Planck company nevertheless that it referred the full salary of a university professor and its coworkers freely select itself could: Finally it could offer a paid employment to his up to then unpaid coworkers Irish from Eibl Eibesfeldt, Wolfgang Schleidt, Ilse and Heinz Prechtl.

the beginnings in sea-meadows

the escalating disputes with the new house gentleman von Schloss Buldern and the obvious thought to fold up the thematically closely neighbouring research at fish and geese also spatially led in the long run in April 1954 to the resolution of the senate of the Max-Planck company to create new Institut for „behavior physiology “- a name misleading in the reason, because had the ethologischen studies planned there with „physiology “as well as nothing to do. The physiology was considered however as „hard science “, while the primarily describing and comparative behavior research stood in the call of the bare hobby and Amateurhaftigkeit.

Still during the building of the institute building at the small, remote Esssee (50 km south of Munich; Konrad Lorenz had the location specified, after it had explored more than one dozen of lakes in Upper Bavaria) Institut of two further Forschungsgebiete was attached: on the one hand the working group of Gustav shopkeeper, on the other hand of Jürgen the Aschoff. Gustav shopkeeper had led and had discovered a department at the institute for Max-Planck for sea biology since 1948 in Wilhelmshaven that migratory birds used the sun as compass; it closed from this that such an ability must have the possession of one „internal clock “for condition. As basis of this clock dailyperiodic rhythms were possible, how them admit with various organisms for a long time were. With such process busy itself Jürgen Aschoff at the institute for Max-Planck for medical research in Heidelberg, and shopkeeper wished itself therefore co-operation with Aschoff, when he was requested for the connection to the developing Seewiesener Institut. The senate of the Max-Planck company decided the mechanism of departments for both researchers to the 1. April 1958.

Before planned co-operation had begun however correctly, Gustav shopkeeper fell to 19. April 1959 on the search for game pigeon eggs when climbing to death. Thereupon for Jürgen Aschoff in Erling Andechs, six kilometers from sea-meadows removed, a larger messuage one acquired, where he dedicated himself further to the biological rhythms of animal and humans, in particular the daily and Jahresperiodik of behaviors. When director/conductor of the former department became a shopkeeper in December 1960 refuge Mittelstaedt appoints, a coworker of many years Erich von Holsts, who itself with the control analysis of complicated orientation ways and instinct movements busy.

research topics

in view of that variety of the special fields investigated in sea-meadows it can only be a goal of the following overview of giving on the basis some researchers a rough idea of this variety:

  • Jürgen Aschoff: biological rhythms with animal and humans, in particular daily and Jahresperiodik of the migratory birds; Energy balance and temperature regularization
  • Irish from Eibl Eibesfeldt: masterhistorical adjustments in the behavior of humans; culture-comparative documentation of social interactions; Aggression research; Analysis of communication in groups of kindergartens
  • Franz Huber: nervous bases of the behavior of crickets and grasshoppers, particularly during the loud generation
  • Karl seriousness Kaissling: Transformation of attractions in excitation with smelling cells
  • Paul Leyhausen: Study of the behavior repertoire of cats and its drive systems
  • Konrad Lorenz: Documentation of the behavior repertoire of grey geese
  • refuge Mittelstaedt: Principles and mechanisms of the data processing in the organism
  • Dietrich cutter: Physiology, biochemistry and biophysics of the sense of smell of insects, fine structure of sensory organ, biosynthesis of pheromones and chemical communication
  • Hermann beautiful one: Space orientation and sense of weight with crustaceans
  • Wolfgang rewinding stand: Social behavior and communication between animals and its developing in the process of the evolution; Biology of the bird inclusively Bird course research


institute for Max-Planck for behavior physiology (= reports and reports of the Max-Planck company 4/78). Given change of the general administration of the Max-Planck company; Munich: 1978


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