Asian elephant society is egalitarian

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by Plazma Inferno!, Oct 17, 2016.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

    New research reveals Asian elephant societies to be less hierarchical than their African relatives.
    In Africa, elephant societies are characterized by matriarchal leadership and a clear pecking order. Many scientists believed Asian elephants organized and interacted in similar ways.
    But when a team scientists lead by biologists from Colorado State University surveyed Asian elephant societies, they observed less than a third as many instances of dominance and deferment behavior -- not enough to establish any clear hierarchical patterns among individuals.
    They told female Asian elephants are a bit more like lionesses than like African savanna elephants.
    Scientists believe the ecology of the two species' varied habitats account for the difference in social organization. Conditions in Africa, where rainfall is sporadic and large predators lurk everywhere, are harsher. The wisdom of an older elephant is more valuable. The early established bonds between mother and children may explain why female elephants call the shots.


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