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Eusociality in a Mammal: Cooperative Breeding in Naked Mole-Rat Colonies

J. U. M. Jarvis
Science
New Series, Vol. 212, No. 4494 (May 1, 1981), pp. 571-573
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1686202
Page Count: 3
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Eusociality in a Mammal: Cooperative Breeding in Naked Mole-Rat Colonies
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Abstract

Laboratory observations on a field-collected colony of 40 Heterocephalus have shown that only a single female breeds. The remaining individuals constitute two or three castes, each containing both sexes and distinguishable by size differences and the tasks they perform. These features, together with long life-spans, overlap of generations, cooperative brood care, and possible age polyethism provide parallels with the eusocial insects.

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