Accepts Nobel Prize for Behavioral Research

In 1973, Konrad Lorenz, Nikolaas Tinbergen, and Karl Frisch, who studied bee communication, jointly accepted the Nobel Prize for their behavioral research. In the same year, Lorenz retired from his position as director of the Seewiesen Institute. He then returned to Altenberg where he continued writing and began directing the department of animal sociology at the Austrian Academy of Science. In addition, the Max Planck Society for the Promotion of Science set up a research station for him at his ancestral home in Altenberg. In 1978, Lorenz gave a more personal view of his work with his picture book The Year of the Greylag Goose. He began the volume with the following: “this is not a scientific book. It would be true to say that it grew out of the pleasure I take in my observations of living animals, but that is nothing unusual, since all my academic works have also originated in the same pleasure. The only way a scientist can make novel, unexpected discoveries is through observation free of any preconceived notions.”

In 1927, the same year his career-launching diary was published, Lorenz married childhood friend Margarethe Gebhardt, a gynecologist. They had two daughters, Agnes and Dagmar, and a son, Thomas. Lorenz was 85 years old when he died February 27, 1989, of kidney failure at his home in Altenburg, Austria.

See also Imprinting .



Burkhardt, Richard W. Patterns of Behavior: Konrad Lorenz, Niko Tinbergen, and the Founding of Ethology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.

Lorenz, Konrad. The Foundations of Ethology. New York: Springer-Verlag, 1981.

Lorenz, Konrad. On Aggression. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1974.

Lorenz, Konrad. On Life and Living: Konrad Lorenz, in Conversation with Kurt Mundl. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1991.

Lorenz, Konrad The Year of the Greylag Goose. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1979.


Sullivan, Walter. “Konrad Lorenz, Pioneer in Study of Animalsrsquo; Behavior, Dies at 85.” New York Times. March 1, 1989 (accessed July 25, 2015).


“Konrad Lorenz.” NNDB. (accessed July 25, 2015).

“Konrad Lorenz—Biographical.” (accessed July 25, 2015).


KLI (formerly Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research), Martinstrasse 12, Austria, A-3400, +432243-302740,, .