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A double pedigree reveals genetic but not cultural inheritance of cooperative personalities in wild banded mongooses / Hazel Nichols, Kevin Arbuckle, Jennifer L. Sanderson, Emma I. K. Vitikainen, Harry H. Marshall, Faye J. Thompson, Michael A. Cant, David A. Wells

Ecology Letters, Volume: 24, Issue: 9, Pages: 1966 - 1975

Swansea University Authors: Hazel Nichols, Kevin Arbuckle

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DOI (Published version): 10.1111/ele.13833

Abstract

Personality traits, such as the propensity to cooperate, are often inherited from parents to offspring, but the pathway of inheritance is unclear. Traits could be inherited via genetic or parental effects, or culturally via social learning from role models. However, these pathways are difficult to d...

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Published in: Ecology Letters
ISSN: 1461-023X 1461-0248
Published: Wiley 2021
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa56999
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Abstract: Personality traits, such as the propensity to cooperate, are often inherited from parents to offspring, but the pathway of inheritance is unclear. Traits could be inherited via genetic or parental effects, or culturally via social learning from role models. However, these pathways are difficult to disentangle in natural systems as parents are usually the source of all of these effects. Here we exploit natural ‘cross fostering’ in wild banded mongooses to investigate the inheritance of cooperative behaviour. Our analysis of 800 adult helpers over 21 years showed low but significant genetic heritability of cooperative personalities in males but not females. Cross fostering revealed little evidence of cultural heritability: offspring reared by particularly cooperative helpers did not become more cooperative themselves. Our results demonstrate that cooperative personalities are not always highly heritable in wild, and that the basis of behavioral traits can vary within a species (here, by sex).
College: College of Science
Issue: 9
Start Page: 1966
End Page: 1975