The effects of social network position on the survival of wild Barbary macaques, Macaca sylvanus

Lehmann, J., Majolo, B. and McFarland, R. ORCID: 0000-0001-8245-9269, 2016. The effects of social network position on the survival of wild Barbary macaques, Macaca sylvanus. Behavioral Ecology, 27 (1), pp. 20-28. ISSN 1045-2249

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Abstract

It has long been shown that the social environment of individuals can have strong effects on health, well-being, and longevity in a wide range of species. Several recent studies found that an individual’s number of affiliative partners positively relates to its probability of survival. Here, we build on these previous results to test how both affiliation and aggression networks predict Barbary macaque (Macaca sylvanus) survival in a “natural experiment.” Thirty out of 47 wild Barbary macaques, living in 2 groups, died during an exceptionally cold winter in the Middle Atlas Mountains, Morocco. We analyzed the affiliation and aggression networks of both groups in the 6 months before the occurrences of these deaths, to assess which aspects of their social relationships enhanced individual survivorship. Using only the affiliation network, we found that network clustering was highly predictive of individual survival probability. Using only the aggression network, we found that individual survival probability increased with a higher number of aggression partners and lower clustering coefficient. Interestingly, when both affiliation and aggression networks were considered together, only parameters from the aggression network were included into the best model predicting individual survival. Aggressive relationships might serve to stabilize affiliative social relationships, thereby positively impacting on individual survival during times of extreme weather conditions. Overall, our findings support the view that aggressive social interactions are extremely important for individual well-being and fitness.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Behavioral Ecology
Creators: Lehmann, J., Majolo, B. and McFarland, R.
Publisher: Oxford University Press (OUP)
Date: January 2016
Volume: 27
Number: 1
ISSN: 1045-2249
Identifiers:
NumberType
10.1093/beheco/arv169DOI
1492416Other
Rights: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in Behavioral Ecology following peer review. The version of record Lehmann, J., Majolo, B., & McFarland, R. (2016). The effects of social network position on the survival of wild Barbary macaques, Macaca sylvanus. Behavioral Ecology, 27(1), 20-28 is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1093/beheco/arv169
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Laura Ward
Date Added: 16 Nov 2021 10:00
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 10:00
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/44803

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