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Data from: Social status and personality: stability in social state can promote consistency of behavioural responses

Citation

Favati, Anna et al. (2014), Data from: Social status and personality: stability in social state can promote consistency of behavioural responses, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.227qn

Abstract

Stability of ‘state’ has been suggested as an underlying factor explaining behavioural stability and animal personality (i.e. variation among, and consistency within individuals in behavioural responses), but the possibility that stable social relationships represent such states remains unexplored. Here, we investigated the influence of social status on the expression and consistency of behaviours by experimentally changing social status between repeated personality assays. We used male domestic fowl (Gallus gallus domesticus), a social species that forms relatively stable dominance hierarchies, and showed that behavioural responses were strongly affected by social status, but also by individual characteristics. The level of vigilance, activity and exploration changed with social status, whereas boldness appeared as a stable individual property, independent of status. Furthermore, variation in vocalization predicted future social status, indicating that individual behaviours can both be a predictor and a consequence of social status, depending on the aspect in focus. Our results illustrate that social states contribute to both variation and stability in behavioural responses, and should therefore be taken into account when investigating and interpreting variation in personality.

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