Giant Australian cuttlefish use mutual assessment to resolve male-male contests
Schnell, Alexandra K.
Smith, Carolynn L.
Hanlon, Roger T.
MetadataShow full item record
KeywordContest competition; Fighting ability; Game theory; Resource-holding potential; Sequential assessment model; Visual signalling
Game theory models provide a useful framework for investigating strategies of conflict resolution in animal contests. Model predictions are based on estimates of resource-holding potential (RHP) and vary in their assumptions about how opponents gather information about RHP. Models can be divided into self-assessment strategies (energetic war-of-attrition, E-WOA; cumulative assessment model, CAM) and mutual assessment strategies (sequential assessment model, SAM). We used laboratory-staged contests between male giant Australian cuttlefish, Sepia apama, to evaluate RHP traits and to test game theory models. Mantle length was a key indicator of RHP because it predicted contest outcome, whereby larger individuals were more likely to win a contest. Winners and losers did not match behaviours, ruling out the E-WOA. There was no relationship between contest outcome, duration and escalation rates, arguing against the CAM. Persistence to continue a contest was based on RHP asymmetry, rather than loser and/or winner RHP, providing support for the SAM. Motivation to fight was determined from a male’s latency to resume a contest following the introduction of a female during a contest. The latency to resume a contest was negatively related to the size of the focal male and positively related to the size of their opponent. These results show that competing males are able to gather information concerning RHP asymmetries, providing support for mutual assessment. Furthermore, males showed significant behavioural differences in their responses to relatively larger than to relatively smaller opponents. Using an integrative approach, our study provides a well-substantiated example of mutual assessment.
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2015. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Elsevier for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Animal Behaviour 107 (2015): 31-40, doi:10.1016/j.anbehav.2015.05.026.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
An assessment of particulate organic carbon to thorium-234 ratios in the ocean and their impact on the application of 234Th as a POC flux proxy Buesseler, Ken O.; Benitez-Nelson, Claudia R.; Burd, Adrian B.; Charette, Matthew A.; Cochran, J. Kirk; Coppola, L.; Fisher, Nicholas S.; Fowler, S. W.; Gardner, Wilford D.; Guo, L. D.; Gustafsson, Orjan; Lamborg, Carl H.; Masque, Pere; Miquel, Juan Carlos; Passow, Uta; Santschi, Peter H.; Savoye, Nicolas; Stewart, G.; Trull, Thomas W. (2005-06-18)Thorium-234 is increasingly used as a tracer of ocean particle flux, primarily as a means to estimate particulate organic carbon export from the surface ocean. This requires determination of both the 234Th activity ...
Using passive samplers to assess bioavailability, toxicity, and reactivity of hydrophobic organic chemicals (HOCs) Tcaciuc, Alexandra P. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2015-06)Hydrophobic organic chemicals (HOCs) are a class of environmental contaminants responsible for numerous acute and chronic health effects in humans and wildlife. This thesis illustrates three applications of polyethylene ...