Joachim Frommen

Joachim Frommen
Manchester Metropolitan University | MMU · Department of Natural Sciences

Doctor rer. nat.

About

90
Publications
25,286
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
2,157
Citations
Introduction
Additional affiliations
November 2019 - present
Manchester Metropolitan University
Position
  • Lecturer
March 2011 - October 2019
Universität Bern
Position
  • Group Leader
September 2008 - February 2011
Austrian Academy of Sciences (OeAW)
Position
  • Junior researcher
Education
March 2011 - October 2017
University of Bern
Field of study
  • Behavioural Biology
April 2002 - March 2007
University of Bonn
Field of study
  • Behavioural Ecology
September 1995 - March 2002
University of Bonn
Field of study
  • Biology

Publications

Publications (90)
Article
Full-text available
01. Aggressive interactions are ubiquitous among animals. They are either directed towards heterospecifics, like predators or competitors, or conspecifics. During intra‐specific encounters, aggression often serves to establish hierarchies within the social group. Thus, in order to understand the mechanisms mediating social organization, it is impor...
Article
Full-text available
Animals may respond to ecological heterogeneity by genetic differentiation or phenotypic plasticity. Responses of organisms to their ecology can include adaptation at various levels of organization, including morphology, behaviour and social structure. Adaptations at one level might constrain or enhance adaptations on other levels, which highlights...
Chapter
Cooperative interactions are widespread in the animal kingdom. Their occurrence can be explained by mutually non-exclusive benefits increasing an individual's (1) indirect fitness by cooperating with kin, and (2) direct fitness by mutually or reciprocally cooperating with others. Many cooperative behaviors require well-developed neuroendocrine mech...
Article
Full-text available
Behavioural reactions towards a mirror image are frequently used to measure individual aggression in a standardized way, especially in fishes. However, this approach was criticized recently on several grounds. One point of concern is that mirror tests are often conducted under highly artificial laboratory settings, while there exists a lack of know...
Article
Full-text available
Phenotypic plasticity is widespread in animals. Still, how plastic responses to predator presence affect traits under sexual selection and influence mating preferences is not well understood. Here, we examined how simulated chronic predator presence during development and acute predator presence during mate choice affect the expression of male seco...
Article
Full-text available
Cooperative breeding systems, where individuals other than parents assist in raising offspring, have been documented in insects, fish, birds, and mammals. Still, the factors driving the evolution of such complex systems are not fully understood. Here, we report a new example of cooperative breeding in the obligate shell-brooding cichlid fish Neolam...
Article
Full-text available
How can individuals obtain a breeding position and what are the benefits associated with philopatry compared to dispersal? These questions are particularly intriguing in polygamous cooperative breeders, where dispersal strategies reflect major life history decisions, and routes to independent breeding may utterly differ between the sexes. We scruti...
Article
Full-text available
Kin selection plays a major role in the evolution of cooperative systems. However, many social species exhibit complex within-group relatedness structures, where kin selection alone cannot explain the occurrence of cooperative behaviour. Understanding such social structures is crucial to elucidate the evolution and maintenance of multi-layered coop...
Article
Full-text available
In cooperatively breeding species, nonbreeding individuals provide alloparental care and help in territory maintenance and defense. Antipredator behaviors of subordinates can enhance offspring survival, which may provide direct and indirect fitness benefits to all group members. Helping abilities and involved costs and benefits, risks, and outside...
Article
Full-text available
In cooperatively breeding societies dominant breeders are assisted by other individuals in raising their young. In many of these species helping behaviours and their benefits for breeders have been studied by investigating the helpers' contribution to direct offspring care, even though a significant proportion of help is not targeted specifically t...
Article
Full-text available
Parasites with complex life cycles often alter the phenotypic appearance of their intermediate hosts in order to facilitate ingestion by the final host. However, such manipulation can be costly as it might increase ingestion by less suitable or dead-end hosts as well. Species-specific parasitic manipulation is a way to enhance the transmission to s...
Article
Full-text available
Tracking wild animals over long periods of time is a non-trivial challenge. This has caused a bias in the availability of individual-based long-term datasets with the majority including birds and mammals. Visual Implant Elastomer (VIE) tags are now a widely used technique that may facilitate the collection of such data for fish and amphibians. Howe...
Chapter
The chance of prey to escape predation strongly depends on its ability to detect the predator before getting attacked. In order to avoid potential lethal attacks, prey species need to be constantly vigilant. At the same time, they need to engage in other activities such as feeding and mating. This creates trade-offs between the time invested in ant...
Article
Full-text available
KIN recognition (i.e. the ability to identify or distinguish kin from non‐kin) is known to be an important trait underlying many social and sexual behaviors. Accordingly, it has received considerable attention in studies on humans and other animals. For example, kin recognition is one of the underlying mechanisms of Hamilton′s inclusive fitness the...
Data
Video showing brood care of a dominant female and her helper in Neolamprologus savoryi
Data
Video showing spawning and pseudospawning of Neolamprologus savoryi
Article
Full-text available
Helping behaviour in cooperative breeders has been intensively studied in many animal taxa, including arthropods, birds and mammals. In these highly social systems, helpers typically engage in brood care and the protection of dependent young. Such helping systems also exist in cooperatively breeding cichlid species of Lake Tanganyika. However, bree...
Article
Full-text available
Group living is widespread across animal taxa, incurring benefits such as increased foraging efficiency or an enhanced chance of surviving a predator's attack. The chances of escaping a predator are often lower for odd‐looking individuals, as these are detected at a higher rate than uniform looking group members. While this “oddity effect” shall op...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Parasites with complex life cycles depend on the ingestion of their intermediate host by the final host. To complete their life cycle successfully, parasites frequently manipulate the behaviour and appearance of the intermediate host. Within host-parasite systems, there is considerable variation in the intermediate host's behavioural re...
Article
Full-text available
In July 2017, Theo C.M. Bakker officially retired as a Professor in Animal Ecology at the University of Bonn, Germany. This occasion was celebrated with a symposium hosted by Thomas Bartolomaeus, Director of the Institute for Evolutionary Biology and Ecology, and organized by Timo Thünken and Ingolf Rick. At this event, former colleagues and studen...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The evolution of complex social organization is mediated by diverse environmental constraints, including predation risk and the availability and distribution of food resources, mating partners, and breeding habitats. The cooperatively breeding cichlid Neo-lamprologus pulcher inhabits highly distinct habitats ranging from sheer rock face...
Article
Full-text available
In cooperatively breeding animals, individuals other than breeders assist in raising young. While it is generally assumed that such helpers increase the reproductive success of breeders, positive effects can be cryptic and difficult to detect. Furthermore, measuring the effect of helpers in the wild is often difficult because multiple factors such...
Article
Full-text available
In cooperatively breeding or eusocial animals, increasing resources such as food is a major task of brood care helpers or workers. While such food acquisition has been shown in several animal taxa, evidence is absent in fishes. Here, we provide the first evidence of increased food abundance caused by helpers in a cooperatively breeding fish. Helper...
Article
Full-text available
Parental investment affects the future survival and reproductive success of breeders. Therefore, breeders should optimize the amount of care they invest into the current offspring. In cooperative breeding systems, the amount of breeders' parental care is influenced by the behavior of brood-care helpers. Such workload adjustment is expected to depen...
Article
Full-text available
Parasites with complex life cycles often change intermediate host traits in order to enhance their transmission to the next host. Acanthocephalans are excellent examples of such parasitic manipulation. Here, we summarise evidence for adaptive parasitic manipulation in this group, provide a comprehensive overview of intermediate host traits affected...
Article
Full-text available
There is a need for rapid and reliable molecular sexing of three-spined sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus, the supermodel species for evolutionary biology. A DNA region at the 5' end of the sex-linked microsatellite Gac4202 was sequenced for the X chromosome of six females and the Y chromosome of five males from three populations. The Y chromoso...
Presentation
Full-text available
Unnoticed by the public, initiatives for oil exploration are advanced in Africa’s largest freshwater reservoirs, including Lakes Tanganyika, Malawi and lately Albert, threatening their ecosystems and biota. It is imperative that environmental impact assessments are conducted by independent organizations to ensure that decisions on this matter are b...
Article
Full-text available
Many animals differ consistently in the way they behave across time and context. This animal personality has been linked to traits such as life history strategies or dispersal. However, few studies have addressed the relationship between consistent behavioural differences and migration. This is of particular interest with respect to partial migrati...
Data
Data for activity and stress latency tests between phenotypes of two hoverfly species, Episyrphus balteatus and Scaeva selenitica.
Article
Full-text available
Visual signals, including changes in coloration and color patterns, are frequently used by animals to convey information. During contests, body coloration and its changes can be used to assess an opponent's state or motivation. Communication of aggressive propensity is particularly important in group-living animals with a stable dominance hierarchy...
Article
Full-text available
Rapid technical advances in the field of computer animation (CA) and virtual reality (VR) have opened new avenues in animal behavior research. Animated stimuli are powerful tools as they offer standardization, repeatability and complete control over the stimulus presented, thereby 'reducing' and 'replacing' the animals used, and 'refining' the expe...
Article
Full-text available
The communication of aggressive propensity is an important component of agonistic interactions. For this purpose, animals use different sensory modalities involving visual, acoustical and chemical cues. While visual and acoustic communication used in aggressive encounters has been studied extensively in a wide range of taxa, the role of chemical co...
Article
Full-text available
As the world’s demands for hydrocarbons increase, remote areas previously made inaccessible by technological limitations are now being prospected for oil and gas deposits. Virtually unnoticed by the public, such activities are ongoing in the East African Great Lakes region, threatening these ecosystems famed for their hyper-diverse biota, includin...
Article
Full-text available
Delayed dispersal of offspring from the natal territory is an important process in the evolution of cooperative breeding. Ecological constraints such as habitat saturation can promote delayed dispersal. Thus far, the role of predation risk in the evolution of cooperative breeding systems has received less attention, although it is understood as an...
Article
Full-text available
Predation risk is a major ecological factor selecting for group living. It is largely ignored, however, as an evolutionary driver of social complexity and cooperative breeding, which is attributed mainly to a combination of habitat saturation and enhanced relatedness levels. Social cichlids neither suffer from habitat saturation, nor are their grou...
Article
Full-text available
The general belief that cooperation and altruism in social groups result primar- ily from kin selection has recently been challenged, not least because results from cooperatively breeding insects and vertebrates have shown that groups may be composed mainly of non-relatives. This allows testing predictions of reciprocity theory without the confound...
Article
Full-text available
Kin selection theory predicts that cooperation is facilitated between genetic relatives, as by cooperating with kin an individual might increase its inclusive fitness. Although numerous theoretical papers confirm Hamilton's inclusive fitness theory, experimental evidence is still underrepresented, in particular in non-cooperative breeders. Cooperat...
Article
Full-text available
Identification of individuals is a prerequisite in many behavioural studies. Visible Implant Elas-tomer (VIE) colour tags are a well-established way to mark animals. VIE tagging does not seem to affect individual growth or survival. However, studies verifying their neutrality during social interactions are less common. Here, individual male and fem...
Article
Full-text available
Chemical cues that evoke anti-predator developmental changes have received considerable attention, but it is not known to what extent prey use information from the smell of predators and from cues released through digestion. We conducted an experiment to determine the importance of various types of cues for the adjustment of anti-predator defences....
Article
Full-text available
The ability to discriminate between different quantities is widespread throughout the animal kingdom, and the underlying mechanisms of quantity discrimination are currently intensely discussed. In contrast, questions elucidating the limits of quantity estimation received rather little attention so far. Here, we examined fine-tuned quantity estimati...
Article
Full-text available
The social environment individuals are exposed to during ontogeny shapes social skills and social competence in groupliving animals. Consequently, social deprivation has serious effects on behaviour and development in animals but little is known about its impact on cooperation. In this study, we examined the effect of social environment on cooperat...
Article
Full-text available
Investigating the role of visual information in animal communication often involves the experimental presentation of live stimuli, mirrors, dummies, still images, video recordings or computer animations. In recent years computer animations have received increased attention, as this technology allows the presentation of moving stimuli that exhibit a...
Article
Full-text available
The behaviour of animals towards their mirror image (“mirror test”) is routinely used as a proxy to measure aggression levels, especially in fish. The lack of evidence for visual self-recognition in fish supports this method. However, recent work points towards different hormonal and gene expression responses when fish are exposed either to conspec...
Article
Full-text available
Grouping behaviour is widespread in animals. One important reason for grouping is the reduction of individual predation risk; the larger a group, the greater the protection for the individual. Fishes, in particular, have become a model taxon in experimental research to study proximate and ultimate causes of grouping. Accordingly, numerous studies h...
Article
Full-text available
The ability to discriminate between related and unrelated individuals has been demonstrated in many species. The mechanisms behind this ability might be manifold and depend on the ecological context in which the species lives. In brood-caring species, both familiarity and phenotype matching are known to be used in kin recognition. However, results...
Article
Full-text available
Environmental factors can determine which group size will maximize the fitness of group members. This is particularly important in cooperative breeders, where group members often serve different purposes. Experimental studies are yet lacking to check whether ecologically mediated need for help will change the propensity of dominant group members to...
Article
Full-text available
Algae blooms, which can be caused by eutrophication, drastically influence the ecology and behaviour of aquatic organisms. Such impact is often demonstrated in the context of mate choice and predator–prey interactions. In contrast, the influence of increased turbidity on social behaviour is less well understood, although it may have strong influenc...
Article
Full-text available
Group living has evolved in many animal species as an antipredator behavior, an evolutionary effect that might be augmented by grouping with similarly looking individuals. Consequently, groups are often composed according to species, size, or coloration. During egg ripening or embryo growth, the outer appearance of females often changes drastically...
Article
Full-text available
Mating between relatives often results in inbreeding depression, and is assumed to have a strong effect on fitness traits such as fertility and gonad/gamete quality. However, data concerning this topic are contradictory and particularly scarce in fishes. Three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus L.) show inbreeding depression in fertilizati...
Article
Full-text available
Predation risk is one of the major forces affecting phenotypic variation among and within animal populations. While fixed anti-predator morphologies are favoured when predation level is consistently high, plastic morphological responses are advantageous when predation risk is changing temporarily, spatially, or qualitatively. Three-spined stickleba...
Article
Full-text available
Parasites with a complex life cycle are supposed to influence the behaviour of their intermediate host in such a way that the transmission to the final host is enhanced, but reduced to non-hosts. Here, we examined whether the trophically transmitted bird parasite Polymorphus minutus increases the antipredator response of its intermediate host, the...
Article
Full-text available
Filial cannibalism occurs in many animal species ranging from insects to mammals, and is especially well described in teleost fishes. Numerous causes may lead to this behaviour, e.g. certainty of paternity. However, the cues males use to assess their paternity often remain unknown. One possible way to differentiate between own and foreign offspring...
Article
Full-text available
Common measures of term importance in information retrieval (IR) rely on counts of term frequency; rare terms receive higher weight in document ranking than common terms receive. However, realistic scenarios yield additional information about terms in ...
Chapter
Full-text available
Kin recognition (KR) is the ability to identify or distinguish kin from nonkin, and it is thought to be an important driving force in the evolution of social and sexual behaviour. Here, we provide an introduction to KR, including an overview of the main debates, the underlying mechanisms and evolutionary analyses. First, we examine the many evolvin...