PNAS - Predation risk drives social complexity in cooperative breeders. Groenewoud, Frommen, Josi, Tanaka, Jungwirth & Taborsky
NATURE COMMUNICATIONS Kinship reduces alloparental care in cooperative
cichlids where helpers pay-to-stay
Zoettl M., Heg D., Chervet N. & Taborsky M. (2013)
Social competence: an evolutionary approach
Taborsky, B. & Oliveira, R.F.
Larval helpers and age polyethism in ambrosia beetles
Biedermann P.H.W. & Taborsky M.
Animal personality due to social niche specialisation
Bergmueller R. & Taborsky M.
Environmental Change Enhances Cognitive Abilities in Fish
Kotrschal, A. & Taborsky, B.
Extended phenotypes as signals
Franziska C. Schaedelin and Michael Taborsky
On the Origin of Species by Natural
and Sexual Selection
G. Sander van Doorn, Pim Edelaar, Franz J. Weissing
Cambridge University Press
Alternative Reproductive Tactics: An Integrative
Oliveira R., Taborsky M. & Brockmann H.J.
Phone: +41 (0)31 631 9161
My PhD project is about the relationship between individual behavioural differences and the social environment in Neolamprologus pulcher.
This species is a cooperatively breeding fish that lives in stable groups of related and unrelated individulas. Dominant individuals monopolize reproduction, and subordinates help defending the territory and caring for the offspring, while trying to gain dominance themselves. This stable social system is well suited to study personality development and the role of individual behavior in life history decisions.
My work is focused on the relationship between social roles and individual behavior, defined as behavioural patterns that are unique to an individual and consistently different to the behavior of others.
1) Testing the social niche hypothesis (Bergmuller Taborsky 2010)
I aim at empirically testing whether the experience of a specific social environment during ontogeny can affect the behavioural development of individuals, and create different behavioural types.
2) Individual behavioural types and social decisions
I investigate how the behavioural type of group members can influence acceptance of new individuals in a group, or mate choice and pair performance (with Master student Mattia Maldonado).
|Since 2011||Phd student at the Department of Behavioural Ecology, Institute of Ecology and Evolution, University of Bern, Switzerland. (Supervisors: Dr. Joachim Frommen, Prof. Michael Taborsky)|
|10/2010||Master of Sciences in Evolutionary Biology (110/110, cum laude), Department of Biology, University of Padova, Italy: â€śHow do ecological conditions shape personality? Investigating the influence of predation risk on the development of behavioural syndromesâ€ť (Supervisors: Prof. Andrea Pilastro, Dr. Joachim Frommen)|
|6/2004 - 7/2008||Bachelor of Sciences in Biology, Department of Biology, University of Padova, Italy: "Ontogeny of numerical abilities in Poecilia reticulata (Ontogenesi delle abilitĂ numeriche in Poecilia reticulata)". (Supervisors: Prof. Andrea Pilastro, Prof. Angelo Bisazza)|
Balzarini V., Taborsky M., Villa F. & Frommen J.G. (2016) Computer animations of color markings reveal the function of visual threat signals in Neolamprologus pulcher. Curr. Zool. online first [pdf]
Balzarini, V., Taborsky, M., Wanner, S., Koch, F., & Frommen J.G. (2014) Mirror, mirror on the wall: the predictive value of mirror tests for measuring aggression in fish. Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol. 68: 871-878 [pdf]
Contributions at Conferences
|ESEB 2015||Lausanne, Switzerland
The social niche experienced early in life influences the behavioural phenotype
|Padova 2013||University of Padova, Italy
Aggression, individual behavioural type and the social environment
|KNDV 2013||International Conference on Individual Differences, 20th KNDV Zoology Conference, Groningen, Netherlands
How does individual behavioural type impact group efficiency in a cooperative breeder?
|Behaviour 2013||Behaviour 2013, Newcastle, England
Integrating helpfulness and personality: towards a comprehensive behavioural type
|ISBE 2014||15th Congress of the International Society of Behavioural Ecology, New York, USA
The relation between social role and behavioral phenotype: a test of the social niche hypothesis
|Biology 14||Biology 14, Geneva, Switzerland
Fish opercular patterns as a signal of aggression
|ISBE 2012||14th Congress of the International Society for Behavioural Ecology, Lund, Sweden
Mirror mirror on the wall, whoâ€™s the most aggressive after all?
|DZG 2011||104th Annual Meeting of the Deutsche Zoologische Gesellschaft, SaarbrĂĽcken, Germany
The influence of perceived predation risk on the development of behavioural syndromes in three-spined sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus
Grants and Awards
|2014||Travel grant from the University of Bern for the 15th Congress of the International Society for Behavioural Ecology, New York, USA|
|2012||Prize for 3rd best poster at the 14th Congress of the International Society for Behavioural Ecology, Lund, Sweden|
|2010||Erasmus grant for Master student internship in Vienna, Austria|
- Nature News: Fish fail to see reflections as rivals
- New Zealand Herald: What do animals see when they look in the mirror?
- Noldus Behavioural Research Blog: Through the looking glass: the accuracy of measuring fish aggression by using mirror tests