Sex-specific participation in inter-group conflicts within a multilevel society: the first evidence at the individual level

Zhao, Dapeng, Chen, Zhuoyue, Li, Baoguo and Romero, Teresa (2013) Sex-specific participation in inter-group conflicts within a multilevel society: the first evidence at the individual level. Integrative Zoology, 8 (4). pp. 441-454. ISSN 1749-4869

Full content URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1749-4877.12058

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Abstract

Inter-group conflicts are common among many group-living animals and involve potentially complex motivations
and interactions. Mammals living in multilevel societies offer a good opportunity to study inter-group
conflicts. This study is the first to explore the function of sex-specific participation during inter-group conflicts
within a multilevel society at the individual level. The Sichuan snub-nosed monkey (Rhinopithecus roxellana)
is an endangered seasonal breeding species living in a multilevel society. From Sep 2007 to May 2008 we recorded
290 inter-group conflicts of a free-ranging provisioned band of R. roxellana in the Qinling Mountains of
China to investigate the function of individual aggression during inter-group encounters. Our findings show that
adult males were the main participants in inter-group conflicts, while females took part in them only occasionally.
The male participation rate during the mating season, when adult females were estrous, was significantly
higher than that during the non-mating season. Furthermore, males directed their aggression to other males, and
directed more intense aggression towards bachelor males than towards other resident males. For both sexes, the
participation rate as initiators was higher in the winter than that in the spring; and there was a significant positive
correlation between group size and the participation rate as initiators. Our results suggest that inter-group
aggression in Sichuan snub-nosed monkeys is linked to both mate defense and resource defense

Keywords:inter-group conflicts, mate defense, multilevel society, Rhinopithecus roxellana, snub-nosed monkey
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C120 Behavioural Biology
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:25907
Deposited On:27 Jan 2017 11:57

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