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Already mated females constrain male mating success in the European starling

Sandell, Maria LU and Smith, Henrik G. LU (1996) In Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 263. p.743-747
Abstract
Most models explaining polygyny in birds have concentrated on variation in male or territorial quality, ignoring the role of females in maintaining monogamy. Although field observations have suggested that already mated females may maintain monogamy by either behaving aggressively toward prospecting females or by interupting male mate attraction behaviour, no experiments have been done to test if already mated females constrain the mating success of their mates. In this study of the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris), the possibility for already settled females to defend their mating status was manipulated by changing the distance between their mates' potential breeding sites. Solitary breeding males were given an extra nest site at... (More)
Most models explaining polygyny in birds have concentrated on variation in male or territorial quality, ignoring the role of females in maintaining monogamy. Although field observations have suggested that already mated females may maintain monogamy by either behaving aggressively toward prospecting females or by interupting male mate attraction behaviour, no experiments have been done to test if already mated females constrain the mating success of their mates. In this study of the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris), the possibility for already settled females to defend their mating status was manipulated by changing the distance between their mates' potential breeding sites. Solitary breeding males were given an extra nest site at different distances from their present one: less than 2 m, 2-5.5 m and 7.5-15 m. The distance between nest sites was the most important determinant of male mating success; few males became polygynous when nest sites were close together whereas most became polygynous when nest sites were further apart. In addition, secondary females were able to lay earlier in relation to the primary females when their nest sites were further away from the primary females' nests. These results support the hypothesis that already mated females constrain the mating success of their mates. (Less)
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organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
volume
263
pages
743 - 747
publisher
Royal Society
external identifiers
  • scopus:0030479835
ISSN
1471-2954
DOI
10.1098/rspb.1996.0111
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
8e24c740-3178-4fee-ad27-d6ff16824e31
date added to LUP
2017-07-11 10:15:50
date last changed
2017-08-20 05:13:40
@article{8e24c740-3178-4fee-ad27-d6ff16824e31,
  abstract     = {Most models explaining polygyny in birds have concentrated on variation in male or territorial quality, ignoring the role of females in maintaining monogamy. Although field observations have suggested that already mated females may maintain monogamy by either behaving aggressively toward prospecting females or by interupting male mate attraction behaviour, no experiments have been done to test if already mated females constrain the mating success of their mates. In this study of the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris), the possibility for already settled females to defend their mating status was manipulated by changing the distance between their mates' potential breeding sites. Solitary breeding males were given an extra nest site at different distances from their present one: less than 2 m, 2-5.5 m and 7.5-15 m. The distance between nest sites was the most important determinant of male mating success; few males became polygynous when nest sites were close together whereas most became polygynous when nest sites were further apart. In addition, secondary females were able to lay earlier in relation to the primary females when their nest sites were further away from the primary females' nests. These results support the hypothesis that already mated females constrain the mating success of their mates.},
  author       = {Sandell, Maria and Smith, Henrik G.},
  issn         = {1471-2954},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {743--747},
  publisher    = {Royal Society},
  series       = {Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences},
  title        = {Already mated females constrain male mating success in the European starling},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.1996.0111},
  volume       = {263},
  year         = {1996},
}