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> BENEFITTING THROUGH INTRASPECIFIC COOPERATION

musk oxen The same principle applies for interactions within species. Even if organisms compete for the same resources, they may also benefit from mutual cooperation. Predators (such as wolves, hyenas or whales) may enhance the chances of capturing prey by acting together. Prey, likewise, may enhance their individual chances of avoiding predation by banding together.

cliff swallows Information about food may also be shared when food becomes available in periodic, plentiful batches as observed among osprey, cliff swallows, weaver birds, crows, honeybees, ants, termites and others. Ultimately, cooperation may enhance fitness, not necessarily diminish it. Benefitting others need not involve individual cost.

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SWALLOW PHOTO COURTESY OF TONY GALLUCCI.

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