This article ends with the remark, “overall, ‘coercion plays a more important role than kinship in favoring cooperation in insect societies.'” But there’s no proof in the article of this being true in the wasps’ activities overall. Only some of their egg handling is mentioned. If the conclusion is true, it overthrows 40 years of careful empirical and theoretical work in sociobiology. Somehow, I doubt it.
Patricia A. Williams Covesville, Va.
From the Nature Index
Subscribers, enter your e-mail address for full access to the Science News archives and digital editions.