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Are behavioral syndromes invariant? Spatiotemporal variation in shy/bold behavior in squid


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Sinn, DL, Moltschaniwskyj, NA, Wapstra, E and Dall, SRX 2010 , 'Are behavioral syndromes invariant? Spatiotemporal variation in shy/bold behavior in squid' , Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, vol. 64, No. 4 , pp. 693-702 , doi: 10.1007/s00265-009-0887-2.

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Behavioral syndromes are correlated suites of
behavior, analogous to human personality traits. Most work
to date has been taken from limited “snapshots” in space
and time, with the implicit assumption that a behavioral
syndrome is an invariant property, fixed by evolutionary
constraints or adaptations. However, directional selection
on two mechanistically independent traits (selective covariance)
could also result in correlated behaviors. Previously,
we have shown that shy/bold behavior in Southern
dumpling squid (Euprymna tasmanica) across predator
encounter and feeding risk contexts is genetically and
phenotypically uncoupled, and hence potentially free to
vary independently. Here, we collected data on shy/bold
behaviors from two independent wild populations of squid
in two different years to test whether behavioral correlations
across these same two functional contexts varythrough time and space. We detected significant influences
of population, sex, and body size on the expression of
boldness in squid within each functional context, and this
was coupled with significant differences in relative population
density and adult sex ratio. Despite these changes in
behavior and demographic parameters, we found that
correlations between boldness scores across the two
functional contexts were largely absent in both wild
populations of squid in both years. Our work suggests that
some animal groups may be largely characterized by
context-specific behavioral expression. A theoretical framework
which conceptualizes behavioral syndromes resulting
from context-specific behavioral rules may be needed to
fully understand why behaviors are sometimes correlated,
and why sometimes they are not.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Sinn, DL and Moltschaniwskyj, NA and Wapstra, E and Dall, SRX
Keywords: Behavioral syndromes . Shy/bold . Selective covariance . State-dependent optimization
Journal or Publication Title: Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
ISSN: 0340-5443
DOI / ID Number: 10.1007/s00265-009-0887-2
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