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Are incubation costs in female pied flycatchers expressed in humoral immune responsiveness or breeding success?

Ilmonen, P; Taarna, T and Hasselquist, Dennis LU (2002) In Oecologia 130(2). p.199-204
Abstract
Although clutch size variation has been a key target for studies of avian life history theory, most empirical work has only focused on the ability of parents to raise their altricial young. In this study, we test the hypothesis that costs incurred during incubation may be an additional factor constraining clutch size in altricial birds. In the pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca), we manipulated the incubation effort of the female by enlarging and reducing clutch sizes. To manipulate incubation effort only, the original clutch sizes were restored shortly after hatching. We found that fledging success was lower among broods whose clutches were enlarged during incubation. There was, however, no effect of manipulation on female body condition... (More)
Although clutch size variation has been a key target for studies of avian life history theory, most empirical work has only focused on the ability of parents to raise their altricial young. In this study, we test the hypothesis that costs incurred during incubation may be an additional factor constraining clutch size in altricial birds. In the pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca), we manipulated the incubation effort of the female by enlarging and reducing clutch sizes. To manipulate incubation effort only, the original clutch sizes were restored shortly after hatching. We found that fledging success was lower among broods whose clutches were enlarged during incubation. There was, however, no effect of manipulation on female body condition or on their ability to mount a humoral immune response to diphtheria or tetanus toxoid during the incubation or nestling provisioning pxeriod. Instead, we found that the original clutch size was related to the immune response so that females with seven eggs had significantly lower primary antibody responses against tetanus compared to those with six eggs. Our results suggest that incubating females are not willing to jeopardise their own condition and immune function, but instead pay the costs of incubating a larger clutch by lower offspring production. The results support the view that costs of producing and incubating eggs may be substantial and hence that these costs are likely to contribute to shaping the optimal clutch size in altricial birds. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Oecologia
volume
130
issue
2
pages
199 - 204
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • wos:000173912100005
  • scopus:0036940836
ISSN
1432-1939
DOI
10.1007/s004420100804
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
a8a500c2-3f93-4d67-a0dc-313dc21e657e (old id 145639)
date added to LUP
2007-06-25 08:28:27
date last changed
2017-02-19 03:40:13
@article{a8a500c2-3f93-4d67-a0dc-313dc21e657e,
  abstract     = {Although clutch size variation has been a key target for studies of avian life history theory, most empirical work has only focused on the ability of parents to raise their altricial young. In this study, we test the hypothesis that costs incurred during incubation may be an additional factor constraining clutch size in altricial birds. In the pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca), we manipulated the incubation effort of the female by enlarging and reducing clutch sizes. To manipulate incubation effort only, the original clutch sizes were restored shortly after hatching. We found that fledging success was lower among broods whose clutches were enlarged during incubation. There was, however, no effect of manipulation on female body condition or on their ability to mount a humoral immune response to diphtheria or tetanus toxoid during the incubation or nestling provisioning pxeriod. Instead, we found that the original clutch size was related to the immune response so that females with seven eggs had significantly lower primary antibody responses against tetanus compared to those with six eggs. Our results suggest that incubating females are not willing to jeopardise their own condition and immune function, but instead pay the costs of incubating a larger clutch by lower offspring production. The results support the view that costs of producing and incubating eggs may be substantial and hence that these costs are likely to contribute to shaping the optimal clutch size in altricial birds.},
  author       = {Ilmonen, P and Taarna, T and Hasselquist, Dennis},
  issn         = {1432-1939},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {199--204},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Oecologia},
  title        = {Are incubation costs in female pied flycatchers expressed in humoral immune responsiveness or breeding success?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s004420100804},
  volume       = {130},
  year         = {2002},
}