Because this article was published more than four years ago, we aren’t including it in tomorrow’s collaboration news roundup, but it’s so good that we couldn’t resist sharing:
It seems that grouper fish and moray eels practice cooperative hunting. Although many animals share hunting responsibilities within their own species, this kind of interspecific collaboration is extremely rare. As the bright minds over at Neurophilosophy explain,
The grouper and the moray eel have complementary hunting strategies – the grouper hunts in open waters, while the moray eel seeks its prey in crevices between rocks. In hunting cooperatively, the two strategies become highly coordinated, with each species playing a different role in the hunt. This makes cooperation mutually beneficial, as it increases the successful capture of prey by both species.
Obviously, grouper and morays have figured out what we at C&R have known for a long time — namely, that splitting the difference with someone whose skills complement your own can make for a great partnership.
And in case you need convincing, here’s an awesome video of a grouper/moray tag team in the Red Sea: