Sociality and Its Effect on Ecology

Sociality and cooperation between individuals is a common occurrence amongst animals. Individuals will associate with each other to for greater fitness benefits. While the origin and evolution of cooperation is a much sought after question in evolution, there also remains the effects of sociality on ecological dynamics. Cooperation creates a complex interplay between behavior and fitness where individuals seek optimal fitness by selectively associating with other individuals and greater fitness leads to more individuals. This can lead to constant joining and splitting of groups and possibly unstable dynamics. I am interested in exploring how different forms of cooperation and sociality affect population and ecological dynamics. I am also interested in the evolutionary underpinnings of cooperation and linking the evolution of sociality to the ecological dynamics.