Social style and resilience of macaques’ networks, a theoretical investigation

Group-living animals rely on efficient transmission of information for optimal exploitation of their habitat. How efficient and resilient a network is depend on its structure, which is a consequence of the social interactions of the individuals that comprise the network. In macaques, network structure differs according to dominance style. Networks of intolerant species are more modular, more centralized, and less connected than those of tolerant ones. Given these structural differences, networks of intolerant species are potentially more vulnerable to fragmentation and decreased information transmission when central individuals disappear. Here we studied network resilience and efficiency in artificial societies of macaques. The networks were produced with an individual-based model that has been shown to reproduce the structural features of networks of tolerant and intolerant macaques. To study network resilience, we deleted either central individuals or individuals at random and studied the effects of these deletions on network cohesiveness and efficiency. The deletion of central individuals had more negative effects than random deletions from the networks of both tolerant and intolerant artificial societies. Central individuals thus appeared to aid in the maintenance of network cohesiveness and efficiency. Further, the networks of both intolerant and tolerant societies appeared to be robust to the loss of individuals, as network fragmentation was never observed. Our results suggest that despite differences in network structure, networks of tolerant and intolerant macaques may be equally resilient.


Social style and resilience of macaques’ networks, a theoretical investigation
Ivan Puga-Gonzalez, Sebastian Sosa, Cedric Sueur