Leadership in homing pigeon flocks (Columba livia) (data from Santos et al. 2014)

Santos CD, Neupert S, Lipp H, Wikelski M, Dechmann D. 2014. Leadership in homing pigeon flocks (Columba livia) (data from Santos et al. 2014). Movebank Data Repository. https://doi.org/10.5441/001/1.33159h1h/1
Organized flight of homing pigeons (Columba livia) was previously shown to rely on simple leadership rules between flock mates, yet the stability of this social structuring over time and across different contexts remains unclear. We quantified the repeatability of leadership-based flock structures within a flight and across multiple flights conducted with the same animals. We compared two contexts of flock composition: flocks of birds of the same age and flight experience; and, flocks of birds of different ages and flight experience. All flocks displayed consistent leadership-based structures over time, showing that individuals have stable roles in the navigational decisions of the flock. However, flocks of balanced age and flight experience exhibited reduced leadership stability, indicating that these factors promote flock structuring. Our study empirically demonstrates that leadership and followership are consistent behaviours in homing pigeon flocks, but such consistency is affected by the heterogeneity of individual flight experiences and/or age. Similar evidence from other species suggests leadership as an important mechanism for coordinated motion in small groups of animals with strong social bonds.
animal movement,animal navigation,collective motion,Columba livia,homing pigeon,social navigation
Related Workflows
  title = {Leadership in homing pigeon flocks (Columba livia) (data from Santos et al. 2014)},
  author = {Santos, CD and Neupert, S and Lipp, H and Wikelski, M and Dechmann, D},
  year = {2014},
  URL = {http://dx.doi.org/10.5441/001/1.33159h1h/1},
  doi = {doi:10.5441/001/1.33159h1h/1},
  publisher = {Movebank data repository}
ID  - doi:10.5441/001/1.33159h1h/1
T1  - Leadership in homing pigeon flocks (Columba livia) (data from Santos et al. 2014)
AU  - Santos, Carlos David
AU  - Neupert, Stefanie
AU  - Lipp, Hans-Peter
AU  - Wikelski, Martin
AU  - Dechmann, Dina
Y1  - 2014/07/31
KW  - animal movement
KW  - animal navigation
KW  - collective motion
KW  - Columba livia
KW  - homing pigeon
KW  - social navigation
KW  - Columba livia
PB  - Movebank data repository
UR  - http://dx.doi.org/10.5441/001/1.33159h1h/1
DO  - doi:10.5441/001/1.33159h1h/1
ER  -