Male Birds Like Neighbors With Similar Personality

Parus major (great tits) have worked out that when choosing where to live, it matters if you can get on with your neighbors. Bachkova Natalia/Shutterstock

High schools provide plenty of examples of the way humans sort themselves by personality, but animals can provide a simpler model to study the evolutionary benefits of this behavior, and whether it can explain the maintenance of personality differences in populations.

IFLScience has covered Johnson's work before, in the form of her evidence that friendship networks act as better painkillers than morphine. It's not unusual for scientists to cover very diverse topics in the course of their careers, but to range across such different areas of science while working on a PhD is unusual. Johnson told IFLScience: “The underpinning link is my interest in personality and social behavior (both its causes and consequences) in humans and other animals.”

But in the end, if you've got enough in common, good neighbors can become good friends. Bachkova Natalia/Shutterstock


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