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Should I stay or should I go?

Female gorillas must balance the reproductive costs of staying with or leaving an older male

When a gorilla group’s silverback is close to the end of his reproductive years, females face a dilemma: Should they stay with him until he dies or leave him for another male? A team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute of Evolutionary Anthropology has now found that both strategies bear its costs: females face reproductive costs of staying with an older male as well as costs when they transfer to a new silverback.

© Marie Manguette/WCS-Congo