Behavioural consistency and group conformity in humbug damselfish

Behavioural consistency and group conformity in humbug damselfish Humbug damselfish, Dascyllus aruanus, are a common coral reef fish that form stable social groups with size-based social hierarchies. Here we caught whole wild groups of damselfish and tested whether social groups tended to be comprised of animals that are more similar to one another in terms of their behavioural type, than expected by chance. First we found that individuals were repeatable in their level of activity and exploration, and that this was independent of both absolute size and within-group dominance rank, indicating that animals were behaviourally consistent. Secondly, despite the fact that individuals were tested independently, the behaviour of members of the same groups was significantly more similar than expected under a null model, suggesting that individual behaviour develops and is shaped by conformity to the behaviour of other group members. This is one of the first studies to demonstrate this group-level behavioural conformity in wild-caught groups. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Behaviour Brill

Behavioural consistency and group conformity in humbug damselfish

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0005-7959
eISSN
1568-539X
D.O.I.
10.1163/1568539X-00003470
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Humbug damselfish, Dascyllus aruanus, are a common coral reef fish that form stable social groups with size-based social hierarchies. Here we caught whole wild groups of damselfish and tested whether social groups tended to be comprised of animals that are more similar to one another in terms of their behavioural type, than expected by chance. First we found that individuals were repeatable in their level of activity and exploration, and that this was independent of both absolute size and within-group dominance rank, indicating that animals were behaviourally consistent. Secondly, despite the fact that individuals were tested independently, the behaviour of members of the same groups was significantly more similar than expected under a null model, suggesting that individual behaviour develops and is shaped by conformity to the behaviour of other group members. This is one of the first studies to demonstrate this group-level behavioural conformity in wild-caught groups.

Journal

BehaviourBrill

Published: Dec 31, 2017

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