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Social Learning in Animals: Empirical Studies and Theoretical Models

This peer-reviewed article from BioScience is about social learning in animals. The last two decades have seen a virtual explosion in empirical research on the role of social interactions in the development of animals' behavioral repertoires, and a similar increase in attention to formal models of social learning. Here we first review recent empirical evidence of social influences on food choice, tool use, patterns of movement, predator avoidance, mate choice, and courtship, and then consider formal models of when animals choose to copy behavior, and which other animals' behavior they copy, together with empirical tests of predictions from those models.

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