Experimental vacancies do not induce settlement despite habitat saturation in a cooperative breeder
The paradox of cooperative breeding, whereby individuals assist others instead of reproducing independently, is generally explained through ecological constraints, but experimental evidence is scant. Here we performed the crucial test of the role of habitat saturation through the experimental creation of vacancies and found that, despite abundant presence of potential mates, subordinates are reluctant to disperse into suitable vacant habitat where conspecifics are absent. We argue that sudden...[Show more]
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