[MARMAM] New publication on sources of individual variation in aggression in Grey Seals

Kelly Robinson kjr33 at st-andrews.ac.uk
Fri Oct 7 04:20:59 PDT 2016

Dear MARMAM subscribers,

My co-authors and I are pleased to announce a new publication exploring the ontogeny of aggressive behaviour in young grey seals:

Robinson, K.J., Pomeroy, P.P. , Hazon, N., Moss, S. & Twiss, S.D. (2016).

Individual size, sex and rearing environment impact on aggression in newly weaned seals.

Marine Mammal Science, DOI: 10.1111/mms.12367

Aggressive behavior is an important part of how animals interact with each other. Aggressiveness enables individuals to defend themselves or to exploit opportunities to obtain resources from others. We investigated which physical and environmental factors affect how aggressive gray seal pups are towards each other once weaned from their mothers on the Isle of May breeding colony in Scotland. We found that pups raised on crowded areas of the colony were more aggressive than pups from areas with few seals, and that physical characteristics (sex and size) also influence how aggressive individuals of this seal species are. Males showed a postive correlation between aggression and size, while the relationship female size and aggression showed a non-linear relationship. Further research is needed to determine whether heightened aggressiveness in large or high density reared infants persists into adulthood, whether it is consistent throughout an individual's lifetime, or if this relationship is present in other age groups or species.

The article can be found at: <http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0144577> http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/mms.12367/full

The article will soon be open access; so anyone who is interested in the manuscript should be able to download a pdf of it once this has gone through. However if you have any problems getting a copy please email kjr33 at st-andrews.ac.uk<mailto:kjr33 at st-andrews.ac.uk>.

Kind regards,

Dr Kelly Robinson

Research Fellow

Sea Mammal Research Unit

Scottish Oceans Institute

University of St Andrews

KY16 8LB

Tel: +44(0)1334 462635

Twitter: @_SMRU_

For more information about my research please visit: https://kellyrobinsonscience.wordpress.com/

The University of St Andrews is a charity registered in Scotland : No SC013532
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