Relatedness decreases and reciprocity increases cooperation in Norway rats
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Kin selection and reciprocity are two mechanisms underlying the evolution of cooperation, but the relative importance of kinship and reciprocity for decisions to cooperate are yet unclear for most cases of cooperation. Here, we experimentally tested the relative importance of relatedness and received cooperation for decisions to help a conspecific in wild-type Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus). Test rats provided more food to non-kin than to siblings, and they generally donated more food to previously helpful social partners than to those that had refused help. The rats thus applied reciprocal cooperation rules irrespective of relatedness, highlighting the importance of reciprocal help for cooperative interactions among both related and unrelated conspecifics.
Schweinfurth , M K & Taborsky , M 2018 , ' Relatedness decreases and reciprocity increases cooperation in Norway rats ' , Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences , vol. 285 , no. 1874 , 20180035 . https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2018.0035
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). This work has been made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created, accepted version manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2018.0035
DescriptionFunding was provided by SNF-grant no. 31003A_156152 to M.T.
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