In many group-living mammals, mothers may increase the reproductive success of their daughters even after they are nutritionally independent and fully grown . However, whether such maternal effects exist for adult sons is largely unknown. Here we show that males have higher paternity success when their mother is living in the group at the time of the offspring's conception in bonobos (N = 39 paternities from 4 groups) but not in chimpanzees (N = 263 paternities from 7 groups). These results are consistent with previous research showing a stronger role of mothers (and females more generally) in bonobo than chimpanzee societies. Surbeck et al. show direct maternal effects for adult sons in a species with male philopatry/female dispersal and co-dominance between the sexes. Males have higher paternity success when their mother is living in the group in bonobos but not in the closely related chimpanzees, where females are subordinate and intervene less in male conflict.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)