Behavioral Ecolog6 - and evolution The answer comes when we...

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Behavioral Ecology Fitness and Social Living Inclusive Fitness Fitness is normally defined as the number of offspring an individual will produce. Natural selection works to maximize fitness, because traits can only be selected for if they are passed down to progeny. Natural selection therefore seems to favor selfish actions that promote one's own fitness over the fitness of other members of one's species. This seeming truth runs into difficulties, however, when faced with actions of social altruism that are quite prevalent in animal society. For example, in eusocial colonies, some individuals forgo reproduction altogether. How can such an action be explained in light of what we know about natural selection
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Unformatted text preview: and evolution? The answer comes when we consider an individual's inclusive fitness, which is the sum of an individual's direct fitness, the number of offspring produced, and indirect fitness, the number of relatives (nieces and nephews) produced multiplied by the degree of relatedness of those individuals. Relatedness The degree of relatedness (r) is the probability of being identical by descent through a common ancestor. As we shall see, this value is dependent on the genetic nature of the species involved. The degree of relatedness between diploid animals will defer than that for haplodiploid animals....
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This note was uploaded on 01/27/2012 for the course BIOLOGY BSC1005 taught by Professor Rodriguez during the Winter '09 term at Broward College.

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