Evolutionary roots of social bonds in female mammals (2012–2014)

Friendships and social networks are known to affect the health and survival of people, but it is not known why mammals originally evolved the propensity to form friendships. This project will study the determinants of friendships and variation in individuals' levels of sociality in a population of 170 individually known wild female kangaroos, and the benefits that friendships and social networks bestow to individuals. The understanding of how friendships have evolved in a mammal with a relatively simple social system will inform our understanding of differences among female mammals and people in levels of sociality, strengths of friendships and health benefits accrued.
Grant type:
ARC Discovery Projects
Funded by:
Australian Research Council