[MARMAM] new publication on infanticide in killer whales

Jared Towers jrtowers at gmail.com
Mon Apr 9 13:42:53 PDT 2018

My co-authors and I are pleased to share our recently published article:

Towers JR, Hallé MJ, Symonds HK, Sutton GJ, Morton AB, Spong P, Borrowman
JP & Ford JKB (2018) Infanticide in a mammal-eating killer whale
population. Scientific Reports 8:4366

This article is open access at: https://www.nature.com/
articles/s41598-018-22714-x and can also be found at:

Abstract: Infanticide can be an extreme result of sexual conflict that
drives selection in species in which it occurs. It is a rarely observed
behaviour but some evidence for its occurrence in cetaceans exists in three
species of dolphin. Here we describe observations of an adult male killer
whale (Orcinus orca) and his post-reproductive mother killing a neonate
belonging to an unrelated female from the same population in the North
Pacific. This is the first account of infanticide reported in killer whales
and the only case committed jointly by an adult male and his mother outside
of humans. Consistent with findings in other social mammals, we suggest
that infanticide is a sexually selected behaviour in killer whales that
could provide subsequent mating opportunities for the infanticidal male and
thereby provide inclusive fitness benefits for his mother.

    regards,    Jared Towers

Alert Bay BC
jrtowers at gmail.com
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