Evolutionary biology: Green beard as death warrant

  title={Evolutionary biology: Green beard as death warrant},
  author={Alan Grafen},
  • A. Grafen
  • Published 6 August 1998
  • Biology
  • Nature
'Green beard' genes are theoretical constructs that cause their bearer to display a distinctive trait, fancifully named a green beard. Bearers of the gene can recognize other individuals with it and, in keeping with selfish-gene thinking, act accordingly. Now it seems that such a gene has been found in the red fire ant. In this case, if queen ants lack the gene they are executed by workers that carry it. 

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