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Evolutionary mechanisms of cooperation and competition: an integrative approach

English title Evolutionary mechanisms of cooperation and competition: an integrative approach
Applicant Taborsky Michael
Number 138660
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Ethologische Station Hasli Institut für Ökologie und Evolution Universität Bern
Institution of higher education University of Berne - BE
Main discipline Ecology
Start/End 01.01.2012 - 31.12.2014
Approved amount 708'783.00
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Keywords (5)

cooperation; sociality; alternative tactics; behaviour; reciprocity

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Lay summary

Konkurrenz und Kooperation sind Grundbausteine sozialen Verhaltens. Die Mechanismen, die sozialen Interaktionen zugrundeliegen, können mit Hilfe theoretischer Modelle sowie ausgewählter empirischer Systeme exemplarisch untersucht werden. Wir verfolgen diesen Ansatz, um auf evolutiver und mechanistischer Ebene aufzuklären, welche Komponenten an der Entstehung und Stabilität sozialer Interaktionsmuster beteiligt sind. Wir nutzen hierfür unter anderem hochsoziale Buntbarsche aus dem Tanganjikasee, die in komplexen Gruppen aus verwandten und nicht-verwandten Artgenossen leben und sowohl bei der Brutpflege, als auch bei der Aufrechterhaltung und Verteidigung eines Territoriums zusammenarbeiten. Hierbei spezialisieren sich verschiedene Gruppenmitglieder auf unterschiedliche Aufgaben, wobei die Grösse der Tiere und die damit verknüpfte Effizienz in der Erfüllung der jeweiligen Aufgaben die Spezialisierung mitbestimmen. Wir untersuchen auch die Mechanismen gegenseitiger Hilfe bei sozialen Tieren, wofür wir zum Beispiel Wanderratten in einem Kooperationsexperiment füreinander Futter beschaffen lassen. Auch hier sind wir an einem Verständnis sowohl der evolutiven Mechanismen, als auch der physiologischen Steuerungsmechanismen interessiert, die Kooperation zwischen potenziellen Konkurrenten ermöglichen, wenn die Kosten der Hilfe (z.B. Energieverbrauch) den unmittelbaren Nutzen für Helfer übertreffen. Das Fernziel dieser Studie ist die Entwicklung eines umfassenden Konzepts der Mechanismen der Kooperation und der Evolution komplexen Sozialverhaltens.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
An evolutionary framework for studying mechanisms of social behavior
Hofmann Hans A., Beery Annaliese K., Blumstein Daniel T., Couzin Iain D., Earley Ryan L., Hayes Loren D., Hurd Peter L., Lacey Eileen A., Phelps Steven M., Solomon Nancy G., Taborsky Michael, Young Larry J., Rubenstein Dustin R. (2014), An evolutionary framework for studying mechanisms of social behavior, in TRENDS IN ECOLOGY & EVOLUTION, 29(10), 581-589.
Coaction versus reciprocity in continuous-time models of cooperation
van Doorn G. Sander, Riebli Thomas, Taborsky Michael (2014), Coaction versus reciprocity in continuous-time models of cooperation, in JOURNAL OF THEORETICAL BIOLOGY, 356, 1-10.
Group augmentation and the evolution of cooperation
Kingma Sjouke A., Santema Peter, Taborsky Michael, Komdeur Jan (2014), Group augmentation and the evolution of cooperation, in TRENDS IN ECOLOGY & EVOLUTION, 29(8), 476-484.
Male and female shell-brooding cichlids prefer different shell characteristics
Mitchell Jeremy S., Ocana Sabine Wirtz, Taborsky Michael (2014), Male and female shell-brooding cichlids prefer different shell characteristics, in ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR, 98, 131-137.
Mirror, mirror on the wall: the predictive value of mirror tests for measuring aggression in fish
Balzarini Valentina, Taborsky Michael, Wanner Sandro, Koch Felizia, Frommen Joachim G. (2014), Mirror, mirror on the wall: the predictive value of mirror tests for measuring aggression in fish, in BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY AND SOCIOBIOLOGY, 68(5), 871-878.
The importance of blocking the gallery entrance in the ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii RATZEBURG (Coleoptera; Scolytinae)
Nuotcla Jon Andreja, Taborsky Michael, Biedermann Peter H. W. (2014), The importance of blocking the gallery entrance in the ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii RATZEBURG (Coleoptera; Scolytinae), in MITTEILUNGEN DER DEUTSCHEN GESELLSCHAFT FUR ALLGEMEINE UND ANGEWANDTE ENTOMOLOGIE, BD 19, 19, 203-203.
Tribute to Tinbergen: The Four Problems of Biology. A Critical Appraisal
Taborsky Michael (2014), Tribute to Tinbergen: The Four Problems of Biology. A Critical Appraisal, in ETHOLOGY, 120(3), 224-227.
Y-linked Mendelian inheritance of giant and dwarf male morphs in shell-brooding cichlids
Ocana Sabine Wirtz, Meidl Patrick, Bonfils Danielle, Taborsky Michael (2014), Y-linked Mendelian inheritance of giant and dwarf male morphs in shell-brooding cichlids, in PROCEEDINGS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES, 281(1794), 1.
Abundance and dynamics of filamentous fungi in the complex ambrosia gardens of the primitively eusocial beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii Ratzeburg (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Scolytinae)
Biedermann Peter H. W., Klepzig Kier D., Taborsky Michael, Six Diana L. (2013), Abundance and dynamics of filamentous fungi in the complex ambrosia gardens of the primitively eusocial beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii Ratzeburg (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Scolytinae), in FEMS MICROBIOLOGY ECOLOGY, 83(3), 711-723.
Group size adjustment to ecological demand in a cooperative breeder
Zoettl Markus, Frommen Joachim G., Taborsky Michael (2013), Group size adjustment to ecological demand in a cooperative breeder, in PROCEEDINGS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES, 280(1756), 1.
Kinship reduces alloparental care in cooperative cichlids where helpers pay-to-stay
Zoettl Markus, Heg Dik, Chervet Noemie, Taborsky Michael (2013), Kinship reduces alloparental care in cooperative cichlids where helpers pay-to-stay, in NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, 4, 1.
Partial brood care compensation by female breeders in response to experimental manipulation of alloparental care
Zoettl Markus, Fischer Stefan, Taborsky Michael (2013), Partial brood care compensation by female breeders in response to experimental manipulation of alloparental care, in ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR, 85(6), 1471-1478.
Paternal inheritance of growth in fish pursuing alternative reproductive tactics
Wirtz-Ocana Sabine, Schuetz Dolores, Pachler Gudrun, Taborsky Michael (2013), Paternal inheritance of growth in fish pursuing alternative reproductive tactics, in ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION, 3(6), 1614-1625.
Social Evolution: Reciprocity There Is
Taborsky Michael (2013), Social Evolution: Reciprocity There Is, in CURRENT BIOLOGY, 23(11), 486-488.
Strategic reduction of help before dispersal in a cooperative breeder
Zoettl Markus, Chapuis Lucille, Freiburghaus Manuel, Taborsky Michael (2013), Strategic reduction of help before dispersal in a cooperative breeder, in BIOLOGY LETTERS, 9(1), 1.
Behavioural type, status and social context affect behaviour and resource allocation in cooperatively breeding cichlids
Riebli Thomas, Taborsky Michael, Chervet Noemie, Apolloni Nadine, Zuercher Yvonne, Heg Dik (2012), Behavioural type, status and social context affect behaviour and resource allocation in cooperatively breeding cichlids, in ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR, 84(4), 925-936.
Female dispersal and reproduction in the ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii RATZEBURG (Coleoptera; Scolytinae)
Biedermann Peter H. W., Peer Katharina, Taborsky Michael (2012), Female dispersal and reproduction in the ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii RATZEBURG (Coleoptera; Scolytinae), in MITTEILUNGEN DER DEUTSCHEN GESELLSCHAFT FUR ALLGEMEINE UND ANGEWANDTE ENTOMOLOGIE, BD 18, 18, 231-235.
Reciprocal cooperation between unrelated rats depends on cost to donor and benefit to recipient
Schneeberger Karin, Dietz Melanie, Taborsky Michael (2012), Reciprocal cooperation between unrelated rats depends on cost to donor and benefit to recipient, in BMC EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY, 12, 1-7.
Spawning coordination of mates in a shell brooding cichlid.
Schütz Dolores, Heg-Bachar Zina, Taborsky Michael, Heg Dik (2012), Spawning coordination of mates in a shell brooding cichlid., in International journal of evolutionary biology, 2012, 517849-517849.
THE EVOLUTION OF GENERALIZED RECIPROCITY ON SOCIAL INTERACTION NETWORKS
van Doorn Gerrit Sander, Taborsky Michael (2012), THE EVOLUTION OF GENERALIZED RECIPROCITY ON SOCIAL INTERACTION NETWORKS, in EVOLUTION, 66(3), 651-664.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Prof. Zoltan Barta, University of Debrecen Hungary (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Prof. Christian Sturmbauer Austria (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Dr. Harris Phiri, Ruben Shapola Zambia (Africa)
- Research Infrastructure
Dr. Oliver Bosch Germany (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
SPE 2014 – 11th Congress of the Portuguese Ethological Society Talk given at a conference Under attack! AVT and IT control aggression in the Princess of Lake Tanganyika 09.10.2014 Vairaõ, Portugal Taborsky Michael;
7th European Conference of Behavioural Biology (ECBB) Poster Defence mechanisms against pathongenic fungi in the ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii / The motivation of dogs to look for people 07.09.2014 Prag, Czech Republic Taborsky Michael;
15th International Behavioral Ecology Congress (ISBE) Talk given at a conference Habitat and predation explain population divergence in cooperatively breeding cichlids / Norway rats use olfactory cues to cooperate reciprocally in an iterated prisoner’s dilemma game / Coaction and reciprocity in cooperating animals / Cooperative defens 28.07.2014 New York, United States of America Taborsky Michael; Schweinfurth Manon Karin; Van Doorn Sander; Jungwirth Arne;
15th International Behavioral Ecology Congress (ISBE) Poster Social role relates to behavioural phenotype / Communal defence enables colonial breeders to reduce anti-predator effort 28.07.2014 New York, United States of America Taborsky Michael; Jungwirth Arne;
SEB (Society of Experimental Biology) International Conference, 2014 Individual talk Contest vs. scramble competition and energy reserve management in male cichlids pursuing alternative reproductive tactics 25.06.2014 Manchester, United States of America Taborsky Michael;
10th International Symposium on Reproductive Physiology in Fish 2014 Talk given at a conference Alternative reproductive tactics in snail-brooding cichlids diverge in energy reserve management 25.05.2014 Olhão, Portugal Taborsky Michael;
Biology14 Poster The Role of AVT and IT for Cooperation and Sociality in Lake Tanganyika Cichlids / Fish opercular patterns as a signal of aggression / How does relatedness affect interactions of helpers in a cooperatively breeding cichlid?/ Habitat preference changes wit 13.02.2014 Genf, Switzerland Taborsky Michael; Jungwirth Arne;
Biology14 Talk given at a conference Cooperative defence reduces individual and total anti-predator effort 13.02.2014 Genf, Switzerland Jungwirth Arne; Taborsky Michael;
Symposium on Human-animal interactions: impacts on animal welfare and behaviour, 2014 Talk given at a conference Social competence and working ability of military dogs in dependence of social experience and different housing conditions 29.01.2014 Bern, Switzerland Taborsky Michael;
Entomologentagung 2013 (DGaaE) Talk given at a conference he function of blocking behaviour in the cooperatively breeding ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus saxesenii 18.03.2013 Göttingen, Germany Taborsky Michael;
International Symposium “Cooperation and Mating Systems Talk given at a conference Coaction and reciprocity in cooperative breeders 17.09.2012 Skagen, Denmark Taborsky Michael;
14th International Behavioral Ecology Congress (ISBE) Talk given at a conference Acceptance of immigrants depends on demand and future perspectives in a social fish; How to get ready to leave: brood care helpers explore dispersal options in dependence of their sex and size 17.08.2012 Lund, Sweden Zöttl Markus; Taborsky Michael; Jungwirth Arne;
14th International Behavioral Ecology Congress (ISBE), 2012 Poster Mirror, mirror on the wall 17.08.2012 Lund, Sweden Taborsky Michael;
33rd International Ethological Congress, 2013 Poster Effects of relative density of alternative male morphs on male-male competition and male-female interactions 04.08.2012 Newcastle, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Taborsky Michael;
6th European Conference of Behavioural Biology (ECBB) Talk given at a conference “Coaction and reciprocity in cooperative breeders” 20.07.2012 Essen, Germany Taborsky Michael;
6th European Conference of Behavioural Biology (ECBB) Talk given at a conference “Subordinates reduce help at home before dispersing” 20.07.2012 Essen, Germany Taborsky Michael; Zöttl Markus; Jungwirth Arne;


Self-organised

Title Date Place
Arolla 2014 12.07.2015 Arolla, Switzerland
7th European Conference of Behavioural Biology (ECBB) 07.09.2014 Prag, Czech Republic
33rd International Ethological Congress 04.08.2013 Newcastle, Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The evolution of consistent phenotype variation: alternative tactics vs. behavioural syndromes 02.08.2012 Adelboden, Switzerland

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
156152 The use of information in social decisions 01.01.2015 Project funding
122511 Evolutionary mechanisms of cooperation and competition: an integrative approach 01.01.2009 Project funding
176174 Evolution of cooperation based on relatedness, negotiation and trading 01.12.2017 Project funding

Abstract

This project focuses on evolutionary mechanisms of cooperation and competition. By using an integrative approach, we aim to understand these prime components of sociality at ultimate and proximate levels. We employ theoretical and empirical means towards this end, combining analytical and simulation approaches, experimental and observational methods, and empirical research in the field and under controlled laboratory conditions. Our model systems include (1) Lake Tanganyika cichlids exhibiting some of the most complex social organizations known among vertebrates, and (2) Norway rats that show different levels of reciprocity - mechanisms the importance of which is highly underrated in animal behaviour research. We hypothesize that previous social experience shapes the behaviour of individuals in future interactions, irrespective of the identity of social partners. We shall continue the currently running project attempting to unravel evolutionary and physiological processes responsible for such social feedback mechanisms. We shall extend our study of evolutionary stability of generalized reciprocity by analytical and individual based modelling techniques, and test for the influence of interaction networks on the evolution of reciprocal cooperation. In addition, we aim to study neuroendocrine mechanisms involved in the regulation of effects caused by social experience. Furthermore, we hypothesize that ecological factors and conditions intrinsic to a species’ biology shape the social interactions and degree of agonistic and cooperative behaviour, including altruism, which has important effects on the evolution of social systems. In this context, we shall obtain long-term fitness measures in the field (cichlids) and study the importance of individual differences to cope with the environment (cichlids, rats) and to learn (rats). Overall, we aim to move towards developing a comprehensive framework of cooperation and advanced social organization, and this project will greatly help us to proceed in this direction.
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