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Social learning has been documented in a wide diversity of animals. In free-living animals, however, it has been difficult to discern whether animals learn socially by observing other group members or asocially by acquiring a new behaviour independently. We addressed this challenge by developing network-based diffusion analysis (NBDA), which analyses the(More)
Linear dominance hierarchies, which are common in social animals, can profoundly influence access to limited resources, reproductive opportunities and health. In spite of their importance, the mechanisms that govern the dynamics of such hierarchies remain unclear. Two hypotheses explain how linear hierarchies might emerge and change over time. The 'prior(More)
Experiments in captivity have provided evidence for social learning, but it remains challenging to demonstrate social learning in the wild. Recently, we developed network-based diffusion analysis (NBDA; 2009) as a new approach to inferring social learning from observational data. NBDA fits alternative models of asocial and social learning to the diffusion(More)
Social network structures can crucially impact complex social processes such as collective behaviour or the transmission of information and diseases. However, currently it is poorly understood how social networks change over time. Previous studies on primates suggest that `knockouts' (due to death or dispersal) of high-ranking individuals might be important(More)
Socioecological theory suggests that feeding competition shapes female social relationships. Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) live in fission-fusion societies that allow them to react flexibly to increased feeding competition by forming smaller foraging parties when food is scarce. In chimpanzees at Gombe and Kibale, female dominance rank can crucially(More)
Social learning is potentially advantageous, but evolutionary theory predicts that (i) its benefits may be self-limiting because social learning can lead to information parasitism, and (ii) these limitations can be mitigated via forms of selective copying. However, these findings arise from a functional approach in which learning mechanisms are not(More)
Dominance hierarchies are widespread in animal social groups and often have measureable effects on individual health and reproductive success. Dominance ranks are not static individual attributes, however, but instead are influenced by two independent processes: 1) changes in hierarchy membership and 2) successful challenges of higher-ranking individuals.(More)
Social network analysis is increasingly applied to understand the evolution of animal sociality. Identifying ecological and evolutionary drivers of complex social structures requires inferring how social networks change over time. In most observational studies, sampling errors may affect the apparent network structures. Here, we argue that existing(More)
It is often assumed that evolution takes place on very large timescales. Countering this assumption, rapid evolutionary dynamics are increasingly documented in biological systems, e.g. in the context of predator–prey interactions, species coexistence and invasion. It has also been shown that rapid evolution can facilitate the evolution of cooperation. In(More)
BACKGROUND A fundamental assumption in animal socio-ecology is that animals compete over limited resources. This view has been challenged by the finding that individuals might cooperatively partition resources by "taking turns". Turn-taking occurs when two individuals coordinate their agonistic behaviour in a way that leads to an alternating pattern in who(More)