Mimicry helps sheep solve a dilemma

Imitation behaviors play a key role in many collective phenomena seen in animals. An analysis of the collective movements of grazing sheep has revealed that sheep alternate slow dispersion phases with very fast regrouping, in which they imitate the behavior of their neighbors. This study shows that the intensity with which the sheep mimic one another plays a crucial role in the ability of a herd to maximize the grazing area explored while minimizing the time needed to regroup when faced with potential dangers. —> Read More