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Independence vs mimetism

by CÚdric Sueur (Submitted: 09/15/2009)

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WHAT IS IT?

This model allows to understand if individuals living in groups move collectively or not. He used mathematical equations found in several studies from insects to primates. In thismodel, two hypotheses can be tested: either individuals are independent and then, their probaility to move only depends on an intrinsec coefficient, either they are dependent and then, a mimetic factor is responsible on their joining and their probability to join the movement.This model was used to test how a group of Tonkean macaques decide collectively to move. To have more information about this study and to used this model, please see and cite: Sueur, C., Petit, O. & Deneubourg, J.L. in press. Selective mimetism at departure in collective movements of Macaca tonkeana: a theoretical and experimental approach. Animal Behaviour, doi: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2009.07.029.

HOW IT WORKS

The resting time corresponded to the duration during which this individual was stationary, that is carrying out an activity other than moving.We calculated the departure latency of the first departing individual ?T01 by scoring the time elapsed between the end of the previous collective movement and the departure of this individual, i.e the resting time. This resting time also corresponds to the intrinsec coefficient of each individual.
In a mimetic process where the departure probability is proportional to the number of individuals already moving, the probability per unit time that one of the n resting agents became the jth joiner is (1 / resting-time) / (number-of-macaques))+(mimetic-coefficient * number-of-joiners))
In our study, we st the mimetic coefficient at 0.05, but you can change it in the procedures. In order to know how to calculate a mimetic coefficient, see: Sueur, C., Petit, O. & Deneubourg, J.L. in press. Selective mimetism at departure in collective movements of Macaca tonkeana: a theoretical and experimental approach. Animal Behaviour, doi: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2009.07.029.
The adhesion limit allow to set a limt of joining for individuals. For instance, we set an adhesion limt of 900s in our study because we considered a collective movement as finished when no individual joined the movement within 5 min of the departure of the first individual or the last individual to join

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