The evolution of flexible parenting
Wilson, Alastair J.
American Association for the Advancement of Science
This is the author’s version of the work. It is posted here by permission of the AAAS for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Science on Vol. 345 no. 6198 pp. 776-781, DOI: 10.1126/science.1253294.
Parenting behaviors, such as the provisioning of food by parents to offspring, are known to be highly responsive to changes in environment. However, we currently know little about how such flexibility affects the ways in which parenting is adapted and evolves in response to environmental variation. This is because few studies quantify how individuals vary in their response to changing environments, especially social environments created by other individuals with which parents interact. Social environmental factors differ from nonsocial factors, such as food availability, because parents and offspring both contribute and respond to the social environment they experience. This interdependence leads to the coevolution of flexible behaviors involved in parenting, which could, paradoxically, constrain the ability of individuals to rapidly adapt to changes in their nonsocial environment.
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Copyright © 2015 American Association for the Advancement of Science. All Rights Reserved.
The data presented in Box 1, which have been deposited in the Open Research Exeter (ORE) data repository and are freely available at http://hdl.handle.net/10871/15217.
Vol. 345, no. 6198, pp. 776 - 781
Place of publication