"Unequal sharing of workloads in societies could leave the most industrious individuals at higher risk of poor health and prone to accelerated ageing, according to a new study of a cooperative bird in the Kalahari Desert.
A team of scientists at the University of Exeter studied white-browed sparrow weavers, a social species in which all group members share offspring care duties, but the dominant male and female work hardest.
Dominants are the only birds that breed, with dominant males singing to attract a mate and dominant females producing all of the eggs and providing most of the care for nestlings.
Both dominants also invest most in fiercely defending the group’s territory.
In order to assess how these unequal workloads impact the health of the birds, the researchers measured the level of antioxidant protection in 93 sparrow weavers before and then again after a long breeding season.
Antioxidant defenses help animals protect themselves against the damaging effects of free radicals, but if hard work overwhelms this protection it can result in oxidative stress – implicated in a range of diseases and ageing.
Lead author Dr Dominic Cram said: “When groups of animals live together, including humans, they often divide workloads, and some individuals work harder than others.”
This handsome forest inhabitant is the northern red-legged frog (Rana aurora), which is often spotted hopping along trails deep in the forest during the summer, far from the ponds where they breed. This is fortunate for young frogs leaving these ponds, since adults will eat almost anything that will fit in their mouths, including smaller individuals of their own kind!
the sketch is on twitter if you’d like to look!! i’m super excited that i have time to work on personal projects now!!!! but i dont have any time to waste on here so i won’t be on tumblr v often anymore just letting you guys know. o/
Remake of an old concept I sketched out like 4 years ago. Kind of sloppy but it got the job done.
Less sloppy, but not quite even. Found out that the paint glows in the dark :) one more pair and I should have it down
6 months in jail for being a responsible father.
Can someone start a petition for this like seriously how is this fair
Sunshine all the time makes a desert
These simple words are so profound & thought provoking.