A SOCIAL ANIMAL RESEARCH PROJECT BASED AT THE UNIVERSITY OF EXETER

 

Homo sit naturaliter animal socialis – Man is by nature a social animal” (Seneca)  

We are a team of researchers who study social behaviour in wild animals. We try to understand why animals cooperate or compete with each other, and how different types of animal society evolved. Our main research organisms are:

mongoose

BANDED MONGOOSES

Banded mongooses are the rougher, tougher cousins of the meerkat, and have fascinating social lives.

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wasp

PAPER WASPS

Paper wasps form small cooperative teams composed of both kin and non-kin, who together share the tasks of building a nest and rearing offspring.

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whale

KILLER WHALES

Killer whales live together in close-knit family groups and have extraordinary social lives.

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humans

HUMANS

Understanding human life history and behaviour presents unique challenges.

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MEET THE MONGOOSES

 

Banded mongooses are the rougher, tougher cousins of the meerkat, and have fascinating social lives.  Watch the video to learn more about our research on these extraordinary animals.

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ABOUT OUR RESEARCH

 

Our research focuses on the lives and behaviour of animals that live in close-knit families and groups. The project originally focused on banded mongooses, but has now expanded to incorporate research on paper wasps, killer whales, and primates, including humans.

 

The Socialis project is directed by Professor Michael Cant, a Professor of Evolutionary Biology at the University of Exeter.  He collaborates with teams of specialist biologists based all over the world.

 

Meet The Teams