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Unformatted text preview: doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2008.0048 , 237-239 4 2008 Biol. Lett. Elizabeth A Tibbetts and Rebecca Lindsay paper wasps dominulus Polistes Visual signals of status and rival assessment in Supplementary data http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/suppl/2009/02/17/4.3.237.DC1.html "Data Supplement" References http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/4/3/237.full.html#related-urls Article cited in: http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/4/3/237.full.html#ref-list-1 This article cites 21 articles, 2 of which can be accessed free Subject collections (2723 articles) evolution (2066 articles) behaviour Articles on similar topics can be found in the following collections Email alerting service here right-hand corner of the article or click Receive free email alerts when new articles cite this article - sign up in the box at the top http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/subscriptions go to: Biol. Lett. To subscribe to This journal is © 2008 The Royal Society on June 11, 2011 rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org Downloaded from Biol. Lett. (2008) 4 , 237–239 doi:10.1098/rsbl.2008.0048 Published online 10 March 2008 Animal behaviour Visual signals of status and rival assessment in Polistes dominulus paper wasps Elizabeth A. Tibbetts * and Rebecca Lindsay Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA * Author for correspondence ( [email protected] ). Aggressive competition is an important aspect of social interactions, but conflict can be costly. Some animals are thought to minimize the costs of conflict by using conventional signals of agonistic ability (i.e. badges of status) to assess rivals. Although putative badges have been found in a range of taxa, little research has tested whether individuals use badges to assess potential rivals before they engage in aggressive contests. Here, choice trials were used to test how the variable black facial patterns in Polistes dominulus wasps are used during rival assess- ment. Focal wasps were given access to two patches of food, each guarded by a wasp whose facial pattern had been experimentally altered. Wasps chose food patches based on the facial pattern of the guard, preferring to challenge guards with facial patterns indicating a low level of quality, while avoiding guards with facial patterns indicating a high level of quality. Therefore, status badges play an important role during rival assessment; paper wasps use facial patterns alone to quickly assess the agonistic abilities of strangers. Keywords: resource-holding potential; dominance; badge of status; melanin; condition dependent; sparrow 1. INTRODUCTION Rival assessment reduces costly aggressive inter- actions by allowing individuals to avoid escalated contests with high-quality opponents. Assessment is often based on characteristics that are logically associated with fighting ability such as body size or call frequency ( Parker 1974 ; Hurd 2006 ). In some taxa, individuals may use conventional signals to...
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This note was uploaded on 08/27/2011 for the course BIONB 2210 taught by Professor Seeley during the Fall '10 term at Cornell.
- Fall '10