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Polygynous male starlings allocate parental effort according to relative hatching date

Bruun, Måns LU ; Sandell, Maria LU and Smith, Henrik G. LU (1997) In Animal Behaviour 54. p.73-79
Abstract
In many polygynous bird species, males allocate most of their parental effort to their primary females’ broods. There are several hypotheses that may explain this: the relative reproductive value of the brood, the energetic demand of the brood, the genetic quality of the female and the certainty of fatherhood may all be higher for the primary females’ broods. Since these parameters may covary in nature, experiments are necessary to determine their importance. Bigynous male European starlings,Sturnus vulgarispredominantly incubated the eggs and fed the nestlings of their primary females. In an experiment we altered the order in which the clutches hatched by exchanging the primary and secondary females’ eggs before hatching. Even though... (More)
In many polygynous bird species, males allocate most of their parental effort to their primary females’ broods. There are several hypotheses that may explain this: the relative reproductive value of the brood, the energetic demand of the brood, the genetic quality of the female and the certainty of fatherhood may all be higher for the primary females’ broods. Since these parameters may covary in nature, experiments are necessary to determine their importance. Bigynous male European starlings,Sturnus vulgarispredominantly incubated the eggs and fed the nestlings of their primary females. In an experiment we altered the order in which the clutches hatched by exchanging the primary and secondary females’ eggs before hatching. Even though experimental males mostly incubated their primary females’ clutches, they predominantly fed the nestlings of the secondary female. Experimental males fed secondary females’ nestlings significantly more than control males did. In fact, experimental males invested in their secondary females’ broods to the same extent as control males invested in their primary females’ broods. This result demonstrates that males use relative brood age to decide how to allocate their parental effort between their broods which has important implications for the evolution of the starling mating system. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Animal Behaviour
volume
54
pages
73 - 79
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:0031193380
ISSN
1095-8282
DOI
10.1006/anbe.1996.0435
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
c09a1105-e3a2-439b-8207-30f3249e267e
date added to LUP
2017-07-11 10:36:03
date last changed
2017-09-10 05:21:32
@article{c09a1105-e3a2-439b-8207-30f3249e267e,
  abstract     = {In many polygynous bird species, males allocate most of their parental effort to their primary females’ broods. There are several hypotheses that may explain this: the relative reproductive value of the brood, the energetic demand of the brood, the genetic quality of the female and the certainty of fatherhood may all be higher for the primary females’ broods. Since these parameters may covary in nature, experiments are necessary to determine their importance. Bigynous male European starlings,Sturnus vulgarispredominantly incubated the eggs and fed the nestlings of their primary females. In an experiment we altered the order in which the clutches hatched by exchanging the primary and secondary females’ eggs before hatching. Even though experimental males mostly incubated their primary females’ clutches, they predominantly fed the nestlings of the secondary female. Experimental males fed secondary females’ nestlings significantly more than control males did. In fact, experimental males invested in their secondary females’ broods to the same extent as control males invested in their primary females’ broods. This result demonstrates that males use relative brood age to decide how to allocate their parental effort between their broods which has important implications for the evolution of the starling mating system.},
  author       = {Bruun, Måns and Sandell, Maria and Smith, Henrik G.},
  issn         = {1095-8282},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {73--79},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Animal Behaviour},
  title        = {Polygynous male starlings allocate parental effort according to relative hatching date},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/anbe.1996.0435},
  volume       = {54},
  year         = {1997},
}