New Paper on Animal Culture Published in the Journal Science

A paper compiled by an international team of researchers with expertise in animals as diverse as birds and whales has been published online on 26 February in the journal Science.  

The paper sets out the evidence accumulated over the years of the importance of social learning in a wide range of vertebrate species.  The research shows that knowledge passed down through generations – by young animals learning from their elders – is as important to the survival of species as genetic transmission, especially in adapting to new migration routes and finding sources of food. Animal culture is a theme where the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) has taken the lead, having organized an expert workshop in Parma, Italy last year.  The subject was also discussed at CMS COP12 in October 2017 in Manila.

The printed edition of the paper will appear on 8 March 2019. Further details about the report’s findings and its authors, Ms Philippa Brakes of the University of Exeter and Professor Christian Rutz of the University of St Andrews, can be found in the press release issued by the University of Exeter.

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