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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 5:41 pm 
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The other bird is still learning the ropes and now it is possible for him to learn from a master (the dominant bird)! :twisted: :lol:

On a serious note: The other bird will be next in line should anything happens with the dominant bird? :hmz:


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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 6:59 pm 
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It is the ultimate "gentleman's agreement". Rather than compete for females, male long-tailed manakins co-operate with their friends.

The tropical birds pair up to perform a courtship song and dance, but the alpha male gets the girl every time.

Meanwhile his "wingman" spends five years playing second fiddle. But he eventually inherits the mating site.

The dance, dubbed "backwards leapfrog", was filmed in Costa Rica by zoologists from the University of Wyoming.

At first glance, it appears like a competitive "dance-off".

But in fact it is a co-operative pact between buddies, says Dr David McDonald, of Wyoming University.

"As far as I know it is the only example of male-male [mating] co-operation in the animal kingdom," he told delegates at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) meeting in Chicago.

"The male birds' partnership lasts up to five years. During that time, the beta male does not copulate.

"He has to wait until alpha male dies - he doesn't kick him out. So he may be waiting until he's 10, 15 or even older."

Dynamic duo

The wingman may be equally as good at dancing as the alpha.
Nevertheless, he agrees to forego sex and let his buddy take the spoils.

If he hits the jackpot he is one of the most successful vertebrates on the planet earth

In return, he will eventually inherit the mating site and become the alpha himself.

The deal could be compared to Gordon Brown and Tony Blair's infamous "Granita pact".

"It's a rough life for a beta male manakin," concedes Dr McDonald.

"But if he hits the jackpot he is one of the most successful vertebrates on the planet earth."

The courtship duet is also highly unusual in evolutionary terms.

Most examples of co-operation in the animal kingdom involve either relatedness or kin selection, but neither is working here, says Dr McDonald.

"The way it works is he is helping establish a reputation for the dance site.

"The females don't know the males individually. They map the sites where males are doing really hot performances.

How well connected a young male is will predict how he will do - whether he becomes an alpha or a beta

"Once a dance site has a strong reputation, females will keep coming back, even when it has a different alpha male.

"You don't go to a restaurant because you know the chef - you go because you know the meal is good.

"In the same way, the female manakins are happy as long as the singing and dancing is good. They let the males sort it all out."

Social networking

But how do the males decide which of them is the alpha?

It is not a case of who is a better dancer, says Dr McDonald.

"Was Michelangelo's master a better artist than he was? Not necessarily," says Dr McDonald.

What it comes down to is how "well connected" he is among his buddies.

"As males grow up, they go through a complex network of social interactions," says Dr McDonald.

"How well connected a young male is will predict how he will do - whether he becomes an alpha or a beta.

"The males know all the other males.

"That's why I call it Facebook for birds."


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7891243.stm


I see the Oom was here. :slap:

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Last edited by Elzet on Wed Aug 25, 2010 7:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 7:03 pm 
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TheunsH wrote:
The other bird is still learning the ropes and now it is possible for him to learn from a master (the dominant bird)!

Image

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 7:05 pm 
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onewithnature wrote:
Now, stop hurrying IB ...



OWN, you've posted this more than once. We get the message.

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 7:49 pm 
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Stop fighting about me, I am old and ugly enough to take care of myself! :naughty: :whistle:

And I have moderating powers so I can make someone disappear ... capiche! :sniper:

Theuns ... spot on, on both point you made! :clap:

Elzets quote explains it well.



Now let me go and rest a bit ...
:rtm: :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 9:38 am 
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:dance: :dance: :dance: Thanks Imberbe! :thumbs_up:

It's all common sense Elzet, but thanks for your research! :wink: :lol:

Next question please, let's get this show on the road! :twisted:


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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 10:37 pm 
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:roll: Pfft!



:whistle:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 27, 2010 12:28 am 
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TheunsH


onewithnature wrote:
Now, stop hurrying IB ...



:naughty: :twisted:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 27, 2010 12:31 am 
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:rtm:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 27, 2010 12:33 am 
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:lol: :lol: :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 05, 2010 7:00 pm 
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:whistle: :whistle:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:47 pm 
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In one family of Southern African mammals, only about one in a hundred animals will ever get the opportunity to mate.

Which family is this, what is the reason for this, and how is this achieved?

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:20 pm 
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Wild guess... a bat?

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 12:59 pm 
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No. :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: The mating game (QM)
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:19 pm 
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:hmz: Naked mole rat ?

There is dimorphism between the queen, her breeding males, and two kind of workers. They have a complex social structure in which only one female (the queen) and one to three males reproduce, while the rest of the members of the colony function as workers. The queen and breeding males are able to breed at one year of age. Workers are sterile, with the smaller focusing on gathering food and maintaining the nest, while larger workers are more reactive in case of attack.
The naked mole rat is one of the two species of mammals that exhibit eusociality. This eusocial organisation social structure, similar to that found in ants, termites, and some bees and wasps, is very rare among mammals. The Damaraland Mole Rat (Cryptomys damarensis) is the only other eusocial mammal currently known.

The relationships between the queen and the breeding males may last for many years, others females are temporally sterile. Queens live from 13 to 18 years, and are extremely hostile to other females behaving like queens, or producing hormones for becoming queens. When the queen dies, another female takes her place, sometimes after a violent struggle with her competitors.

Smaller workers focus on acquiring food and maintaining tunnels, while the larger workers are more reactive in case of attacks. As in certain bee species, the workers are divided along a continuum of different worker-caste behaviors instead of discrete groups. Some function primarily as tunnellers, expanding the large network of tunnels within the burrow system, and some primarily as soldiers, protecting the group from outside predators. Workers are sterile when there is no new reproductive role to fill.

Colonies range in size from 20 to 300 individuals, averaging 75 individuals

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