The risks of following the herd and banded mongooses

21 October 2010
Presented by Richard Hollingham, Sue Nelson


Have you ever noticed that when you cross a busy road, as well as clocking the traffic, you subconsciously follow what your neighbours do? Scientists have recently put a figure on this and worked out that we're 2.5 times more likely to cross if our immediate neighbour makes a move to cross. Richard Hollingham goes to Leeds to meet the researcher behind the study to find out why we have such kamikaze tendencies, and how the research helps us understand shoaling, herding and flocking behaviour. Later on, we get up close and personal with banded mongooses in Uganda. Hear what the researchers studying them have to say about why all females give birth at the same time, in the next instalment of our unique audio diaries.


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