Cooperation and Social Structuring in Mammals

Our research focuses on mechanisms that promote and stabilise social interactions in mammals. Our aim is to understand the evolution of social behaviour as well as how interactions with conspecifics structure groups and populations, processes also relevant for conservation. Working both in the field and in the laboratory, we use behavioural, ecological, physiological and molecular genetic methods, to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the causes and consequences of social behaviour.

Head of group: Prof. Dr. Barbara König

Research themes:

  • Communal nursing in wild house mice (Mus domesticus)
  • Energetics and immunology of lactation
  • Social selection through female social partner choice
  • Kin recognition and kin discrimination
  • Sociogenetics of cooperation
  • Social interactions and parasites
  • Conservation biology and animal welfare