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Sperm competition in the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris): An experimental study of mate switching

Smith, Henrik LU ; Wennerberg, Liv LU and von Schantz, Torbjörn LU (1996) In Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences 263(1371). p.797-801
Abstract
In apparently monogamous or polygynous birds, sperm from several males may compete to fertilize the eggs laid by one female. In this study we evaluate sperm competition in the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) by means of a mate-switching experiment. Already-mated males were removed between 1-7 d before their mates started egg-laying, resulting in the female remating with a new male. The original males' parentage in the subsequent clutches was evaluated using DNA-fingerprinting. The original males fathered only two out of 46 eggs of those which were not likely to have been fertilized already when the males were removed. The low success of the original males can be attributed to a high within-pair copulation frequency during the assumed... (More)
In apparently monogamous or polygynous birds, sperm from several males may compete to fertilize the eggs laid by one female. In this study we evaluate sperm competition in the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) by means of a mate-switching experiment. Already-mated males were removed between 1-7 d before their mates started egg-laying, resulting in the female remating with a new male. The original males' parentage in the subsequent clutches was evaluated using DNA-fingerprinting. The original males fathered only two out of 46 eggs of those which were not likely to have been fertilized already when the males were removed. The low success of the original males can be attributed to a high within-pair copulation frequency during the assumed fertile period before laying and throughout the laying period, resulting in replacement males fathering most offspring. Thus the success of extra-pair copulations more than 2 d before egg-laying is probably very low. The results are discussed in relation to contrasting results from other mate-switching studies. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
frequency, extra-pair paternity, intraspecific brood parasitism, female control, dna, zebra finch, birds, copulation, cuckoldry
in
Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences
volume
263
issue
1371
pages
797 - 801
publisher
Royal Society
external identifiers
  • scopus:0030474671
ISSN
1471-2954
DOI
10.1098/rspb.1996.0119
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
39480249-f7e4-4931-9c17-83b94d0fbe98 (old id 1747730)
date added to LUP
2011-02-21 13:41:07
date last changed
2017-01-01 06:48:14
@article{39480249-f7e4-4931-9c17-83b94d0fbe98,
  abstract     = {In apparently monogamous or polygynous birds, sperm from several males may compete to fertilize the eggs laid by one female. In this study we evaluate sperm competition in the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) by means of a mate-switching experiment. Already-mated males were removed between 1-7 d before their mates started egg-laying, resulting in the female remating with a new male. The original males' parentage in the subsequent clutches was evaluated using DNA-fingerprinting. The original males fathered only two out of 46 eggs of those which were not likely to have been fertilized already when the males were removed. The low success of the original males can be attributed to a high within-pair copulation frequency during the assumed fertile period before laying and throughout the laying period, resulting in replacement males fathering most offspring. Thus the success of extra-pair copulations more than 2 d before egg-laying is probably very low. The results are discussed in relation to contrasting results from other mate-switching studies.},
  author       = {Smith, Henrik and Wennerberg, Liv and von Schantz, Torbjörn},
  issn         = {1471-2954},
  keyword      = {frequency,extra-pair paternity,intraspecific brood parasitism,female control,dna,zebra finch,birds,copulation,cuckoldry},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1371},
  pages        = {797--801},
  publisher    = {Royal Society},
  series       = {Royal Society of London. Proceedings B. Biological Sciences},
  title        = {Sperm competition in the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris): An experimental study of mate switching},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.1996.0119},
  volume       = {263},
  year         = {1996},
}