Even fish have to protect their reputations

Misbehaving in front of others can ruin your reputation even if you are a fish, according to an international study that has shown for the first time an audience can influence levels of cooperation in non-human animals.

Scientists have found that cleaner fish that remove parasites from larger “client” fish – providing a type of cleaning service – are less likely to bite their client if they have an audience of other fish (eavesdropping bystanders).

These cleaner fish sometimes get greedy and bite clients rather than sticking to parasites. This bad behaviour brings mealtimes to an abrupt end as the disgruntled larger fish swims off.

Read more at The University of Queensland