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Mobbing - 20th centurys expression Mobbing-ein Begriff des 20 Jahrhunderts



Mobbing - 20th centurys expression Mobbing-ein Begriff des 20 Jahrhunderts



Ornithologische Beobachter. Maerz; 1001: 9-15



Mobbing is well known as an anti-predator behaviour, especially in birds. It is initiated mainly by little songbirds with the aim to harass and disturb an owl, a raptor or a corvid. The meaning of such a behaviour can be explained by the move-on hypothesis (bothering a predator and forcing it to leave the area) and/or the cultural transmission hypothesis (experienced tutor birds transmit their knowledge to naive ones), in 1902 the first page of the newly established journal "Der Ornithologische Beobachter" was illustrated by a mobbing scene; the fascination this behaviour generates has not diminished since then. Originally, German ethologists used "Hassen" or "Feindhassen" to describe this behaviour, but together with the growing importance of the anglophone literature mobbing became a common term in German ornithology. Nevertheless, in the last 10 or 20 years the term mobbing was adopted by sociopsychologists and (re)-introduced successfully to the German language. Nowadays, it is an everyday word in the sense of intriguing against somebody at school or at work.

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