Navigation Links
Fairy wrens: Accountants of the animal kingdom
Date:3/18/2011

A puzzling example of altruism in nature has been debunked with researchers showing that purple-crowned fairy wrens are in reality cunningly planning for their own future when they assist in raising other birds' young by balancing the amount of assistance they give with the benefits they expect to receive in the future.

Dr Anne Peters, of the Monash University School of Biological Sciences, together with co-authors Sjouke Kingma from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology and Michelle L. Hall of the Australian National University, have conducted a long term study of the cooperative breeding behaviour of fairy-wrens in tropical Australia.

The results, published in the prestigious journal The American Naturalist, show that helpers are not motivated by kindness.

"The study showed that the seemingly selfless little helpers are in fact carefully calculating accountants" said Dr Peters, senior author of the study.

Cooperative breeding, where birds apparently selflessly raise others' offspring, has long perplexed biologists as this behaviour runs counter to Darwin's theory of natural selection, which predicts that individuals invest only in their own reproduction.

Fairy-wrens are habitual cooperative breeders. The helpers are generally older silblings or half-siblings of the current nestlings, and their behaviour is likely explained by an instinctive desire to see more of their shared genes entering the gene pool.

Purple-crowned fairy-wrens extend this assistance to unrelated nestlings.

Dr Peters' study shows that these apparently altruistic helpers are actually playing a selfish game: they help when their chances of inheriting the current breeding territory are greater, and they are thus helping to raise their own future assistants.

"Ours is the first study to show that helpers at the nest adjust their behaviour precisely according to multiple potential rewards: they provide food to kin,
'/>"/>

Contact: Emily Walker
media@monash.edu
61-399-034-840
Monash University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Long-term study shows effect of climate change on animal diversity
2. Researchers find animal with ability to survive climate change
3. Researchers note differences between people and animals on calorie restriction
4. Earliest animal footprints ever found -- discovered in Nevada
5. Details of evolutionary transition from fish to land animals revealed
6. Drug-embedded microparticles bolster heart function in animal studies
7. Swamping bad cells with good in ALS animal models helps sustain breathing
8. Moderate use averts failure of type 2 diabetes drugs in animal model
9. Grapes may aid a bunch of heart risk factors, animal study finds
10. Animal and biological science highlights: San Antonio Fluid Dynamics Conference, Nov. 23-25
11. Discovery of giant roaming deep sea protist provides new perspective on animal evolution
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/29/2014)... LANSING, Mich. – As bodies decompose, their types ... the clues they provide could mean the difference ... , Michigan State University is using a more ... help Detroit death-scene investigators examine these changing populations. ... as geographical location of death, gender, race, socioeconomic ...
(Date:10/29/2014)... potential of the Barcode of Life Data Systems ... Biodiversity Data Journal (BDJ) used specimen ... these into a human-readable text developed in manuscript within ... used to study the species distributions of ten Nearctic ... BOLD is originally designed to support the generation and ...
(Date:10/29/2014)... 2014 – Ghrelin is a hormone released by the ... is commonly viewed as a psychoactive substance that primarily ... caloric food. , This knowledge, combined with findings ... ghrelin has the potential to stimulate alcohol craving. , ... humans and found that, as they had anticipated, alcohol ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):MSU partners with Detroit to investigate death scenes 2Go straight and publish: From Barcode of Life Data Systems to scholarly publishing systems 2Ghrelin stimulates an appetite for drinking alcohol 2
... found a critical piece in the evolutionary puzzle that ... ago. The team, from the School of Biomedical ... into more complex cells and found this crucial step ... thought. Team leader and ARC Federation Fellow ...
... The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) today announced the ... the Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) that will maximize ... TGen expects the agreement to create a robust basic-science-to-translational ... for patient benefit. "We are ...
... are especially reactive to stress are more vulnerable to ... their peers. But a new longitudinal study suggests that ... well when they,re raised in supportive environments. The ... the University of California, San Francisco, and the University ...
Cached Biology News:An answer to another of life's big questions 2TGen finalizes alliance with Van Andel Research Institute 2TGen finalizes alliance with Van Andel Research Institute 3High sensitivity to stress isn't always bad for children 2
(Date:10/30/2014)... (PRWEB) October 29, 2014 Global polyvinyl ... the world economic crisis during 2008-2009, especially in North ... recovered and currently is keeping to a growing trend. ... volume is utilized in the construction segment. In 2013, ... pipes, profiles, tubing, sheets and rigid film. Moreover, the ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... James Sherley says he has been working towards ASCTC ... his days as a principal investigator at the Fox Chase ... Sherley founded the ASCTC as a new Boston biotech start-up ... developed in Sherley’s research over the years since FCCC, first ... and more recently as a senior scientist at the now ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... Calif. , Oct. 30, 2014 Isis Pharmaceuticals, ... therapeutics, today announced that management will present a company overview ... at 8:30 a.m. ET in Boston, MA. ... be available on the "Investors & Media" section of the ... on the Isis website within 48 hours and will be ...
(Date:10/27/2014)... North Carolina (PRWEB) October 27, 2014 ... invited earlier this month to sit down with Bryan Hamilton, ... from RPG Solutions to discuss talent in the Research Triangle ... topics that were highlighted at the roundtable include ... the Triangle, the significance of work/life balance and the unique ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Global Polyvinyl Chloride Demand Is on Upward Trend Now, Says Merchant Research & Consulting in Its Topical Study 2Global Polyvinyl Chloride Demand Is on Upward Trend Now, Says Merchant Research & Consulting in Its Topical Study 3Boston’s Adult Stem Cell Technology Center, LLC Introduces A New Technology for Monitoring Previously Elusive Adult Stem Cells 2Boston’s Adult Stem Cell Technology Center, LLC Introduces A New Technology for Monitoring Previously Elusive Adult Stem Cells 3Boston’s Adult Stem Cell Technology Center, LLC Introduces A New Technology for Monitoring Previously Elusive Adult Stem Cells 4Isis Pharmaceuticals to Present at the Nomura Biotechnology Conference 2Personify's Ryan Carfley Talks Recruiting with Triangle Business Journal, RPG Solutions 2Personify's Ryan Carfley Talks Recruiting with Triangle Business Journal, RPG Solutions 3
... Family of, Tissue Dissection Tools, Which Have Been Used ... ... Calif., Oct. 28 PEAK Surgical, Inc., a,medical device company ... proprietary technology, has introduced two extensions to its,PEAK PlasmaBlade(TM) family ...
... Senomyx,s Discovery of a Promising New Flavor Ingredient Achieves ... Collaboration ... (Nasdaq: SNMX ), a leading company focused on using proprietary,technologies ... ingredient supply industries, announced today that it has,received a payment from ...
... to Advance P-552, DURHAM, N.C., Oct. 28 ... they have entered into an agreement to,co-develop Parion,s proprietary ... mouth associated with primary Sjogren,s syndrome., Under the ... P-552. Kainos will provide funding to help advance the,program ...
Cached Biology Technology:PEAK Surgical Introduces PlasmaBlade(TM) Product Line Extensions for Use in General Surgery 2PEAK Surgical Introduces PlasmaBlade(TM) Product Line Extensions for Use in General Surgery 3SENOMYX ANNOUNCES RECEIPT OF MILESTONE PAYMENT FROM THE COCA-COLA COMPANY 2SENOMYX ANNOUNCES RECEIPT OF MILESTONE PAYMENT FROM THE COCA-COLA COMPANY 3Parion Sciences and Kainos Medicines Sign Clinical Development Agreement for Novel Dry Mouth Treatment 2Parion Sciences and Kainos Medicines Sign Clinical Development Agreement for Novel Dry Mouth Treatment 3
Polyclonal Antibody to Coronin / CORO1C This antibody was developed against synthetic peptides corresponding to amino acids 407-420 of human CORO1C....
... Tyrosine Hydroxylase (Ser40) Polyclonal Antibody ... against synthetic phosphopeptide corresponding to ... phospho-Ser40 of rat Tyrosine Hydroxylase ... by sequential chromatography on phospho- ...
Monoclonal Antibody to GLP Immunogen: Ni-NTA purified truncated recombinant GLP expressed in E. Coli strain BL21 (DE3)...
Biotin anti-human CD164...
Biology Products: