definitions
  • synonyms

dominance hierarchy


noun Animal Behavior.

a system or set of relationships in animal groups that is based on a hierarchical ranking, usually established and maintained by behavior in aggressive encounters: one or a few members hold the highest rank and the others are submissive to those ranking higher and dominant to those ranking lower.

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Nearby words

domiciliary, domiciliary care, domiciliate, domiciliated, dominance, dominance hierarchy, dominance of genes, dominant, dominant character, dominant eye, dominant gene

Origin of dominance hierarchy

First recorded in 1970–75
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019