In marmot social networks, victimization may be heritable
Not to reopen any emotional scars from Thanksgiving dinner, but an unusual study of an animal social network suggests that ending up as the butt of unfriendly interactions could be in part inherited.
The study, in yellow-bellied marmots, gives the first look beyond people at what facets of social relationships might have genetic components, says coauthor Daniel Blumstein of UCLA.
It’s receiving incoming social attention, particularly in grouchy interactions, that showed a small but intriguing genetic influence, Blumstein says. Aspects of initiating interactions in a network, whether to dish out snubs or snuggles, showed no evidence of heritability, ac