Unpleasant, we read these days is enough, therefore, we dedicate ourselves to here comforting phenomenon from the animal world. Animals, the comfort – the Asian elephant, among others.

As with many other social animals can be observed in Them altruistic behavior. Altruism is what we are currently experiencing on a daily basis: Altruistic we behave, if we stay home to protect the lives of Vulnerable that we might know the times.

but There are also animals that show altruistic behavior. Why? This is one of the great unsolved mysteries of biology – and one of the currently hot discussed research questions.

Help without self-interest

In humans, is actually an animal, we already know a little bit more. The ability to co-operate with us very early, perhaps already in the case of our animal ancestors originated. Ever since Homo sapiens lived in small groups, where everyone has known. A good reputation has always been extremely important. Who was driven out of the group, had no chance of Survival. In addition, it was for each individual to survive is important that the group worked together. The ability to help others, is created entirely out of self-interest. We call this principle, however, suitable for: The one Hand washes the other.

The man no longer developed but so far, that he calculated every action he makes Use of it – altruism has become one of our creature types (unfortunately not all of us).

The elephant and the dog

In the animal world, we find altruistic behaviour around elephants. Heart-warming is the story of an Asian elephant, has steadfastly refused to RAM a tree trunk in a hole. In the hole, a dog was. An example of altruism, even across Species, in addition to. Also, a number of cases of elephants are documented, the other dogs in distress do not support, even if they come from the own herd.

it is also Noteworthy that elephants visit again and again, bones and Remains of deceased fellows. And while you are doing this, are watching, increased secretions flow from glands and intense social interactions. It is a human category, but we would call this behavior Mourn.

Simon Jäggi (40) is a boy singer of the rock band the sorrow, works at the natural history Museum of Bern and keeps chickens. Scientific Council: Prof. Christian Kropf. Jäggi writes every second Friday of the VIEWS.