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Emotion in animal contests

Crump, A, Bethell, EJ, Earley, R, Lee, VE, Mendl, M, Oldham, L, Turner, SP and Arnott, G (2020) Emotion in animal contests. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 287 (1939). ISSN 0962-8452

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Emotions encompass cognitive and behavioural responses to reward and punishment. Using contests as a case-study, we propose that short-term emotions underpin animals' assessments, decision-making and behaviour. Equating contest assessments to emotional ‘appraisals', we describe how contestants appraise more than resource value and outcome probability. These appraisals elicit the cognition, drive and neurophysiology that governs aggressive behaviour. We discuss how recent contest outcomes induce long-term moods, which impact subsequent contest behaviour. Finally, we distinguish between integral (objectively relevant) and incidental (objectively irrelevant) emotions and moods (affective states). Unlike existing ecological models, our approach predicts that incidental events influence contest dynamics, and that contests become incidental influences themselves, potentially causing maladaptive decision-making. As affective states cross contexts, a more holistic ethology (incorporating emotions and moods) would illuminate animal cognition and behaviour.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 06 Biological Sciences, 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences, 11 Medical and Health Sciences
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Biological & Environmental Sciences (from Sep 19)
Publisher: The Royal Society
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2020 10:03
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2021 06:19
DOI or ID number: 10.1098/rspb.2020.1715
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/14071
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