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Daily energy expenditure of singing great reed warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus

Hasselquist, Dennis LU and Bensch, Staffan LU (2008) In Journal of Avian Biology 39(4). p.384-388
Abstract
According to honest signalling theory, signals must be costly to produce to retain information about the signaller's quality. The song produced by male birds during breeding is a vocal "ornament" used for intra- and inter-sexual purposes. The energetic cost of this vocal signal remains a contentious issue. We used the doubly labelled water method to measure field metabolic rate by estimating CO2 production and then convert this to daily energy expenditure (DEE) in great reed warbler males singing under natural conditions (10 at low to moderate intensity and 7 at very high intensity from dawn to dusk). There was a significant positive relationship between singing intensity and DEE. From this relationship we extrapolated the average DEE for... (More)
According to honest signalling theory, signals must be costly to produce to retain information about the signaller's quality. The song produced by male birds during breeding is a vocal "ornament" used for intra- and inter-sexual purposes. The energetic cost of this vocal signal remains a contentious issue. We used the doubly labelled water method to measure field metabolic rate by estimating CO2 production and then convert this to daily energy expenditure (DEE) in great reed warbler males singing under natural conditions (10 at low to moderate intensity and 7 at very high intensity from dawn to dusk). There was a significant positive relationship between singing intensity and DEE. From this relationship we extrapolated the average DEE for intensely singing males (i.e., males producing song sounds 50% of the time and hence sitting at their elevated song post in the top of a reed stem more or less continuously throughout the similar to 20 h of daylight) to 3.3xBMR (basal metabolic rate) and for non-singing males to 2.2xBMR. The mean DEE measured for the seven males singing with very high intensity was 3.1xBMR. The maximum measured DEE for a single male was 3.9xBMR, i.e. close to the maximum sustainable DEE (4xBMR), and the minimum DEE was 2.1xBMR for a male singing at very low intensity. These results imply that producing intensive advertising song in birds may incur a substantial cost in terms of increased energy expenditure. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Journal of Avian Biology
volume
39
issue
4
pages
384 - 388
publisher
Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd
external identifiers
  • wos:000257708600003
  • scopus:58349121905
ISSN
0908-8857
DOI
10.1111/j.2008.0908-8857.04427.x
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
852f9de4-0d2f-4dd2-a94e-aa6c7258a615 (old id 1254700)
date added to LUP
2008-10-29 15:52:02
date last changed
2017-01-01 05:07:13
@article{852f9de4-0d2f-4dd2-a94e-aa6c7258a615,
  abstract     = {According to honest signalling theory, signals must be costly to produce to retain information about the signaller's quality. The song produced by male birds during breeding is a vocal "ornament" used for intra- and inter-sexual purposes. The energetic cost of this vocal signal remains a contentious issue. We used the doubly labelled water method to measure field metabolic rate by estimating CO2 production and then convert this to daily energy expenditure (DEE) in great reed warbler males singing under natural conditions (10 at low to moderate intensity and 7 at very high intensity from dawn to dusk). There was a significant positive relationship between singing intensity and DEE. From this relationship we extrapolated the average DEE for intensely singing males (i.e., males producing song sounds 50% of the time and hence sitting at their elevated song post in the top of a reed stem more or less continuously throughout the similar to 20 h of daylight) to 3.3xBMR (basal metabolic rate) and for non-singing males to 2.2xBMR. The mean DEE measured for the seven males singing with very high intensity was 3.1xBMR. The maximum measured DEE for a single male was 3.9xBMR, i.e. close to the maximum sustainable DEE (4xBMR), and the minimum DEE was 2.1xBMR for a male singing at very low intensity. These results imply that producing intensive advertising song in birds may incur a substantial cost in terms of increased energy expenditure.},
  author       = {Hasselquist, Dennis and Bensch, Staffan},
  issn         = {0908-8857},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {384--388},
  publisher    = {Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd},
  series       = {Journal of Avian Biology},
  title        = {Daily energy expenditure of singing great reed warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.2008.0908-8857.04427.x},
  volume       = {39},
  year         = {2008},
}