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Group living enhances individual resources discrimination: the use of public information by cockroaches to assess shelter quality.

Canonge S, Deneubourg JL, Sempo G - PLoS ONE (2011)

Bottom Line: Such use of public information allows animals to discriminate between alternatives whereas isolated individuals are ineffective (i.e. the personal discrimination efficiency is weak).Our theoretical results, obtained from a mathematical model based on behavioral rules derived from experiments, highlight that the collective discrimination emerges from competing amplification processes relying on the modulation of the individual sheltering time without shelters comparison and communication modulation.Without any behavioral change, the system is able to shift to a more effective strategy when alternatives are present: the modification of the spatio-temporal distributions of individuals leading to the collective selection of the best resource.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Unit of Social Ecology, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Brussels, Belgium. scanonge@ulb.ac.be

ABSTRACT
In group-living organisms, consensual decision of site selection results from the interplay between individual responses to site characteristics and to group-members. Individuals independently gather personal information by exploring their environment. Through social interaction, the presence of others provides public information that could be used by individuals and modulates the individual probability of joining/leaving a site. The way that individual's information processing and the network of interactions influence the dynamics of public information (depending on population size) that in turn affect discrimination in site quality is a central question. Using binary choice between sheltering sites of different quality, we demonstrate that cockroaches in group dramatically outperform the problem-solving ability of single individual. Such use of public information allows animals to discriminate between alternatives whereas isolated individuals are ineffective (i.e. the personal discrimination efficiency is weak). Our theoretical results, obtained from a mathematical model based on behavioral rules derived from experiments, highlight that the collective discrimination emerges from competing amplification processes relying on the modulation of the individual sheltering time without shelters comparison and communication modulation. Finally, we well demonstrated here the adaptive value of such decision algorithm. Without any behavioral change, the system is able to shift to a more effective strategy when alternatives are present: the modification of the spatio-temporal distributions of individuals leading to the collective selection of the best resource. This collective discrimination implying such parsimonious and widespread mechanism must be shared by many group living-species.

Show MeSH
Settlement under shelters according to population size.(1 (n = 32), 10 (n = 30), 16 (n = 30) and 30 cockroaches (n = 25)) at t = 180 min. (A) Mean fraction of the total population under both shelters (Kruskal-Wallis test: KW = 23.6, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.01; for other comparisons p>0.05); (B) Mean fraction of the total population under each shelter: dark (black) and light (white) (Kruskal-Wallis test for dark shelter: KW = 31.17, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.001, for other comparisons p>0.05). Error bars indicate S.E.M.
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pone-0019748-g001: Settlement under shelters according to population size.(1 (n = 32), 10 (n = 30), 16 (n = 30) and 30 cockroaches (n = 25)) at t = 180 min. (A) Mean fraction of the total population under both shelters (Kruskal-Wallis test: KW = 23.6, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.01; for other comparisons p>0.05); (B) Mean fraction of the total population under each shelter: dark (black) and light (white) (Kruskal-Wallis test for dark shelter: KW = 31.17, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.001, for other comparisons p>0.05). Error bars indicate S.E.M.

Mentions: The first evidence about the population size influences was underlined by the cockroach propensity to shelter. Indeed, less than 22% of isolated cockroaches are found under shelters after 180 min (n = 32) whereas more than 70% of the total population is sheltered when cockroaches are in groups of 10 (n = 30), 16 (n = 30) or 30 (n = 25) individuals (fig. 1A).


Group living enhances individual resources discrimination: the use of public information by cockroaches to assess shelter quality.

Canonge S, Deneubourg JL, Sempo G - PLoS ONE (2011)

Settlement under shelters according to population size.(1 (n = 32), 10 (n = 30), 16 (n = 30) and 30 cockroaches (n = 25)) at t = 180 min. (A) Mean fraction of the total population under both shelters (Kruskal-Wallis test: KW = 23.6, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.01; for other comparisons p>0.05); (B) Mean fraction of the total population under each shelter: dark (black) and light (white) (Kruskal-Wallis test for dark shelter: KW = 31.17, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.001, for other comparisons p>0.05). Error bars indicate S.E.M.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3119082&req=5

pone-0019748-g001: Settlement under shelters according to population size.(1 (n = 32), 10 (n = 30), 16 (n = 30) and 30 cockroaches (n = 25)) at t = 180 min. (A) Mean fraction of the total population under both shelters (Kruskal-Wallis test: KW = 23.6, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.01; for other comparisons p>0.05); (B) Mean fraction of the total population under each shelter: dark (black) and light (white) (Kruskal-Wallis test for dark shelter: KW = 31.17, p<0.0001; Dunn's Multiple Comparisons Test: paired comparison including 1 individual p<0.001, for other comparisons p>0.05). Error bars indicate S.E.M.
Mentions: The first evidence about the population size influences was underlined by the cockroach propensity to shelter. Indeed, less than 22% of isolated cockroaches are found under shelters after 180 min (n = 32) whereas more than 70% of the total population is sheltered when cockroaches are in groups of 10 (n = 30), 16 (n = 30) or 30 (n = 25) individuals (fig. 1A).

Bottom Line: Such use of public information allows animals to discriminate between alternatives whereas isolated individuals are ineffective (i.e. the personal discrimination efficiency is weak).Our theoretical results, obtained from a mathematical model based on behavioral rules derived from experiments, highlight that the collective discrimination emerges from competing amplification processes relying on the modulation of the individual sheltering time without shelters comparison and communication modulation.Without any behavioral change, the system is able to shift to a more effective strategy when alternatives are present: the modification of the spatio-temporal distributions of individuals leading to the collective selection of the best resource.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Unit of Social Ecology, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Brussels, Belgium. scanonge@ulb.ac.be

ABSTRACT
In group-living organisms, consensual decision of site selection results from the interplay between individual responses to site characteristics and to group-members. Individuals independently gather personal information by exploring their environment. Through social interaction, the presence of others provides public information that could be used by individuals and modulates the individual probability of joining/leaving a site. The way that individual's information processing and the network of interactions influence the dynamics of public information (depending on population size) that in turn affect discrimination in site quality is a central question. Using binary choice between sheltering sites of different quality, we demonstrate that cockroaches in group dramatically outperform the problem-solving ability of single individual. Such use of public information allows animals to discriminate between alternatives whereas isolated individuals are ineffective (i.e. the personal discrimination efficiency is weak). Our theoretical results, obtained from a mathematical model based on behavioral rules derived from experiments, highlight that the collective discrimination emerges from competing amplification processes relying on the modulation of the individual sheltering time without shelters comparison and communication modulation. Finally, we well demonstrated here the adaptive value of such decision algorithm. Without any behavioral change, the system is able to shift to a more effective strategy when alternatives are present: the modification of the spatio-temporal distributions of individuals leading to the collective selection of the best resource. This collective discrimination implying such parsimonious and widespread mechanism must be shared by many group living-species.

Show MeSH