Mesotocin influences pinyon jay prosociality.

  1. Whitney Leichner
  2. Holly Ahmann

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Description: These data come from a prosocial choice task conducted on captive pinyon jays. Experiment 1 measured baseline preferences (i.e. without hormonal manipulation), and Experiment 2 involved administration of a high or low dose of mesotocin (the avian homolog of oxytocin) or a saline control. Pinyon jays are prosocial but not altruistic and mesotocin increases the proportion of prosocial choices (over control). Thus, while prior research showed mesotocin's role in avian social behavior, like mammalian oxytocin, mesotocin also influences avian prosocial behavior.

License: CC0 1.0 Universal


Citation: Duque, J.F., Leichner, W., Ahmann, H. & Stevens, J.R. (2018). Mesotocin influences pinyon jay prosociality. Biology Letters, 14(4), 20180105. DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2018.0105 Abstract: Many species exhibit prosocial behaviour, in which one individual's actions benefit another individual, often without an immediate benefit to itself. The neuropeptide oxytocin is an important hormonal mechanism...


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