The value of specific discrimination is straightforward for many signal contexts, such as with isolation or contact telephone calls, territorial marks, or position announcements. In contrast, the worthiness of individual discrimination is less straightforward for security alarm signals, which is not yet known how or under what circumstances individual discrimination would be beneficial in an alarm context. One proposed system is that receivers may discriminate specific signalers and respond in different ways predicated on the signaler’s reliability, and that this may allow the receivers to boost their antipredator behavior. To judge this system, I built a powerful model to test the fitness final results of 5 receiver response strategies under varying environmental, life background, and public conditions.
The individual discrimination strategy yielded the highest fitness under the widest selection of conditions, and the difference was significant except in cases of very low predation pressure and high signaler precision. The adaptive value of specific discrimination of alarm indicators may thus be considered a general sensation in nature and may provide an evolutionary pressure for pets to increase their discrimination abilities. For species that nepotistically use alarm signals, the value of specific discrimination could provide selective pressure for the development of individual signatures in alarms and could help clarify why the security alarm signals of many varieties are so individualistic. The adaptive value of individual discrimination is straightforward for many sign contexts.
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Receivers benefit by discerning the average person identity of conspecifics as this allows receivers to modulate aggression, cooperation, avoidance, solicitation, and other cultural behaviors as appropriate (Gosling 1982; Stevens et al. It is important for animals to identify territory holders, ranked individuals socially, parents, offspring, mates, and coalition partners, and very important to these individuals to be named well (Medvin et al. 1993; Crowley et al. Accordingly, individuality and individual discrimination have developed within a variety of sign contexts, including contact and isolation indicators, mating indicators, and territorial signals (e.g., Stoddard et al.
1991; Kendrick et al. 1996; Mitani et al. 1996; Rendall et al. 1996; Sayigh et al. 1999; Insley 2000; Reby et al. 2001; Jouventin and Aubin 2002; Gerhardt and Bee 2002; Tibbetts 2002; Digweed et al. 2007; Carazo et al. Initially, we may expect individual discrimination to be less important or minimized in other transmission contexts even.
In a security alarm context, it isn’t immediately apparent why discrimination of individual signalers would be beneficial. In the existence of a predation threat, the life-or-death value of the alarm’s warning may overshadow any concerns about the individual identity of the alarm’s source. It is thus not clear under what conditions a recipient should attend to the individual identification of the alarm signaler or what benefits may accrue in so doing. In this study, I evaluate one possible system where the adaptive advantages of individual discrimination could accrue. Within this mechanism, receivers discriminate individual signalers and use information about the average person signaler’s reliability to see their behavioral response.
Differential response is valuable because security alarm signalers vary in their reliability (Cheney and Seyfarth 1988; Blumstein et al. Due to underlying individual distinctions (Robinson 1981; Coss and Hanson 2001; Blumstein et al. Atkins and Hare 2001; Blumstein et al. Some individuals might often overlook predators or only signal security alarm if a high excitation threshold is reached; others might produce frequent false alarms due to skittishness, confusion, or for the purpose of deception (Munn 1986; Gouzoules et al.