Behav Ecol Sociobiol (2017) 71:102 DOI 10.1007/s00265-017-2330-4 ORIGINAL ARTICLE Punish the thief—coevolution of defense and cautiousness stabilizes ownership 1,2 3 Martin Hinsch & Jan Komdeur Received: 8 March 2017 /Revised: 15 May 2017 /Accepted: 18 May 2017 The Author(s) 2017. This article is an open access publication Abstract Significance statement Ownership of non-controllable resources usually has to be Many animals defend resources against conspecifics. maintained by costly defense against competitors. Resource defense can usually only evolve if its costs are paid Whether defense and thus ownership pays in terms of for by foiling attempts at theft. We show that if potential fitness depends on its effectiveness in preventing theft. thieves can detect differences in aggressiveness between We show that if the owners’ willingness to defend varies owners then cautious intruders and aggressive owners co- in the population and information about it is available to evolve so that in the end even ineffective defense deters potential thieves then the ability to react to this informa- thieves and maintains ownership. This result greatly extends tion and thus avoid being attacked by the owner is select- the number of situations in which we expect resource defense ed for. This can lead to
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 16, 2017
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