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Does information sharing promote group foraging?

Sernland, Emma LU ; Olsson, Ola LU and Holmgren, NMA (2003) In Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences 270(1520). p.1137-1141
Abstract
Individuals may join groups for several reasons, one of which is the possibility of sharing information about the quality of a foraging area. Sharing information in a patch-foraging scenario gives each group member an opportunity to make a more accurate estimate of the quality of the patch. In this paper we present a mathematical model in which we study the effect of group size on patch-leaving policy and per capita intake rate. In the model, group members share information equally in a random search for food. Food is distributed in patches according to a negative binomial distribution. A prediction from our model is that, the larger the group, the earlier each group member should leave the current patch. We also find that the benefit from... (More)
Individuals may join groups for several reasons, one of which is the possibility of sharing information about the quality of a foraging area. Sharing information in a patch-foraging scenario gives each group member an opportunity to make a more accurate estimate of the quality of the patch. In this paper we present a mathematical model in which we study the effect of group size on patch-leaving policy and per capita intake rate. In the model, group members share information equally in a random search for food. Food is distributed in patches according to a negative binomial distribution. A prediction from our model is that, the larger the group, the earlier each group member should leave the current patch. We also find that the benefit from enhanced exchange of information does not exceed the cost of sharing food with group members. The per capita intake rate decreases as the group size increases. Therefore, animals should only form groups when other factors outweigh the costs, which is easiest to achieve when the travelling time is short. (Less)
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author
organization
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type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences
volume
270
issue
1520
pages
1137 - 1141
publisher
Royal Society
external identifiers
  • pmid:12816651
  • wos:000183400900005
  • scopus:0038201493
ISSN
1471-2954
DOI
10.1098/rspb.2003.2352
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
aec2b6bf-a837-4b26-a8cd-b9de101db448 (old id 135469)
date added to LUP
2007-06-25 12:49:12
date last changed
2018-05-29 09:58:38
@article{aec2b6bf-a837-4b26-a8cd-b9de101db448,
  abstract     = {Individuals may join groups for several reasons, one of which is the possibility of sharing information about the quality of a foraging area. Sharing information in a patch-foraging scenario gives each group member an opportunity to make a more accurate estimate of the quality of the patch. In this paper we present a mathematical model in which we study the effect of group size on patch-leaving policy and per capita intake rate. In the model, group members share information equally in a random search for food. Food is distributed in patches according to a negative binomial distribution. A prediction from our model is that, the larger the group, the earlier each group member should leave the current patch. We also find that the benefit from enhanced exchange of information does not exceed the cost of sharing food with group members. The per capita intake rate decreases as the group size increases. Therefore, animals should only form groups when other factors outweigh the costs, which is easiest to achieve when the travelling time is short.},
  author       = {Sernland, Emma and Olsson, Ola and Holmgren, NMA},
  issn         = {1471-2954},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1520},
  pages        = {1137--1141},
  publisher    = {Royal Society},
  series       = {Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences},
  title        = {Does information sharing promote group foraging?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2003.2352},
  volume       = {270},
  year         = {2003},
}