Matthew J. Anderson, Ph.D.
Dr. Anderson is an experimental psychologist specializing in animal behavior. His research focuses on avian species, with a particular interest in flamingos and budgerigars.
Dr. Anderson and his students study the captive flock of Caribbean flamingos (Phoenicopterus ruber) at the Philadelphia Zoo, and also employ web cams trained on flocks around the globe in order to better understand the behavior of these highly social, iconic birds, and to perhaps gain some insight into the evolution and workings of general behavioral processes. His research on Caribbean flamingo resting behavior and efforts to answer the age-old question, "Why do flamingos stand on one leg?" have received substantial media coverage from around the globe. In addition to his work on flamingos, Dr. Anderson also maintains a small colony of Budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulates) in order to allow for on-campus behavioral studies of this ever-popular bird species.
Some of his specific research interests include: animal learning & cognition, animal personality & curiosity, avian social behaviors (aggression, pair-bonding, etc.), laterality, resting behaviors, and behavioral correlates of avian health and wellbeing. He also has an interest in human-avian relations.
- Ph.D. Kent State University
- M.A. Kent State University
- B.A. Susquehanna University
Anderson, M. J. (Ed.). (2017). Flamingos: Behavior, Biology, and Relationship with Humans. Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., ISBN: 978-1-53610-236-9.
Duggan, M.R., Lee-Soety, J.Y., & Anderson, M.J. (2017). Personality types in Budgerigars, Melopsittacus undulatus. Behavioural Processes, 138, 34-40.
Buckley, D.P., Duggan, M.R., & Anderson, M.J. (2017). Budgie in the Mirror: an exploratory analysis of social behaviors and mirror use in the Budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus). Behavioural Processes, 135, 66-70.
Royer, E. A., & Anderson, M. J. (2014). Evidence of a dominance hierarchy in captive Caribbean flamingos and its relation to pair bonding and physiological measures of health. Behavioural Processes, 105, 60-70.
Anderson, M. J., & Ialeggio, D. M. (2014). Behavioural Laterality as a Predictor of Health in Captive Caribbean Flamingos (Phoenicopterus ruber): An Exploratory Analysis. Laterality: Asymmetries of Body, Brain and Cognition, 19, 12-36. DOI:10.1080/1357650X.2012.753453.
Peluso, A. I., Royer, E. A., Wall, M. J., & Anderson, M. J. (2013). The relationship between environmental factors and flamingo aggression examined via internet resources. Avian Biology Research, 6, 215-220.
Anderson, M.J. (2013). Pink Flamingos All Around. Mechanicsburg, PA: Speckled Egg Press. Paperback Edition: ISBN: 978-1-62006-314-9, Hardcover Edition: ISBN: 978-1-62006-547-1.
Bouchard, L. C., & Anderson, M. J. (2011). Caribbean flamingo resting behavior and the influence of weather variables. Journal of Ornithology, 152, 307-312.
Anderson, M. J., & Williams, S. A. (2010). Why do flamingos stand on one leg? Zoo Biology, 29, 365-374.
Anderson, M. J. (Ed). (2006). Tasks and Techniques: A Sampling of Methodologies for the Investigation of Animal Learning, Behavior, and Cognition. Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., ISBN: 1-60021-126-7.
Mentioned in SJU News
Intellect, Spring 2014
Faculty Expert Profile
Expertise: Flamingo Behavior, Animal Learning and Behavior, Laterality