Trends in ecology & evolution vol:21 issue:11 pages:599-600
We thank Fletcher et al.  for their comments on our recent TREE article . These can be condensed down to two key points. First, a change in the definition of altruism: to claim that altruism can evolve without relatedness, Fletcher et al have simply changed and broadened the definition used by Wilson and Ho¨lldobler  and ourselves  to include reciprocal altruism. Second, the authors argue that group selection preceded kin selection (i.e. inclusive fitness) theory as a theoretical tool to explain altruism in the social insects. We discuss both but note that
neither point weakens our article , or rescues the problems in that by Wilson and Ho¨lldobler .