Mathias Franz

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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)
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)
BACKGROUND Advanced cognitive abilities are widely thought to underpin cultural traditions and cumulative cultural change. In contrast, recent simulation models have found that basic social influences on learning suffice to support both cultural phenomena. In the present study we test the predictions of these models in the context of skill learning, in a(More)
A point mutation in the DNA polymerase gene in equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1) is one determinant for the development of neurological disease in horses. Three recently conducted infection experiments using domestic horses and ponies failed to detect statistically significant differences in viral shedding between the neuropathogenic and non-neuropathogenic(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)
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