The socioecological model Flashcards Preview

Year 3: Primate Ecology and Behaviour > The socioecological model > Flashcards

Flashcards in The socioecological model Deck (34):

The environment forces sociality. True or false?

True: the environment is responsible for the groups animals live in.


What is Darwinian feminism?

Although males are often dominant and appear to have control, the requirements of female primates drive the system and males fit in around this


Females can be described as 'bottlenecks of reproduction'. What does this mean?

Reproduction is reliant on the fertility/fecundity of females.


There is more ecological pressure on females than on males. Why?

Females have a higher investment in reproduction.


What do a) the male and b) the female contribute in reproduction?

a) 1 sperm
b) 1 egg, pregnancy and lactation


How do males maximise their reproductive fitness?

By increasing the chance of fertilisation, i.e. searching for females


How do females maximise their reproductive success?

By obtaining enough resources from their environment to sustain pregnancy and lactation, i.e. searching for food.


a) What do males compete with each other for?

b) What do females compete with each other for?

a) Females.

b) Food.


In polyandry there is an offloading of parental investment. Female primates normally have higher parental investment, so why does this happen?

The female must compete with other females for access to males thus she has less investment in caring for offspring. Females behave as males do in polygyny.


Females should avoid other females as they are in competition for resources. What are 2 hypotheses for why we see female animals living in groups?

1. Resource defence
2. Predator defence


Explain female grouping for resource defence.

The more females there are, the more resources they can defend against other groups and share between themselves. Thus reproductive rate increases with group size.


Give a negative of female grouping for resource defence.

When groups become excessively large, intra-group competition outweighs inter-group and reproductive success within the group will be lowered.


Explain female grouping for predator defence.

Idea of safety in numbers, the more animals there are the less likely it is they will be eaten.


Female grouping for predator defence encourages v. large groups, creating a decrease in reproductive rate due to intra-group competition for resources which is not offset by the gain of group-acquired resources. How then is it perceived as a reproductive strategy?

It increases lifespan: if there are more animals there is less chance they will be eaten, thus they live longer. This gives them more chances to reproduce.


It is often assumed that female grouping is defined by a combination of resource and predator defence. How?

Predator defence sets the lower limit of individuals in the group and resource defence sets the upper limit.


What are competitive regimes?

Types of interaction between females for resources.


What is scramble competition?

Competition for abundant food sources, e.g. grass, leaves etc.


What is contest competition?

Competition for rarer food sources, e.g. fruit or prey


Within-group scramble competition in smaller groups yields higher per-capita food intake. Why?

An abundance of food is shared between few individuals.


Within-group contest competition yields a higher per-capita food intake in which size group?

It depends on the dominance hierarchy.


When would there be between-group contest but within-group scramble?

When groups of females fight to monopolise a resource like a leafy tree.


When would there be both between and within group contest?

When groups of females fight to monopolise a resource like a fruit tree.


With between group competition, which group size ensures a higher per-capita food intake?

Larger groups as they are more likely to win a contest.


Once a group has monopolised a resource for which there will be within-group contest competition, what must the dominant female do?

She must make sure she shares the resources with her subordinates so they support her in future contests.


At what frequency is there agonism in a) scramble and b) contest competition?

a) rare
b) common


At what frequency is there kin support in a) scramble and b) contest competition?

a) rare
b) common


At what intensity is there rank stability in a) scramble and b) contest competition?

a) low
b) high


What changes group structure during a) scramble and b) contest competition?

a) migration
b) splitting


Describe the nature of a group based on scramble competition. Give 3 things.

Non-linear hierarchy, egalitarian and individualistic.


Describe the nature of a group based on contest competition. Give 3 things.

Linear hierarchy, authoritarian and nepotistic (relatives favoured)


Do males undergo scramble or contest competition? Why?

Contest, because males compete for fertilisations which cannot be shared.


What does multiparous mean?

A female has had numerous babies.


What does nulliparous mean?

A female has never had a baby before.


What does primaparous mean?

A female is having her first baby/has had one baby