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Adaptive significance of egg size in the European Starling: experimental tests

Smith, Henrik G. LU ; Ohlsson, Thomas LU and Wettermark, K. J (1995) In Ecology 76. p.1-7
Abstract
Reproductive success in relation to egg size was studied in European Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) by swapping whole clutches between nests at the start of the incubation period. Egg size did not reflect parental quality as no measure of reproductive success was correlated with the foster mothers' mean egg size. There was a significant positive relationship between the mean size of the cross-fostered eggs and the subsequent mean size of hatchlings. The mean size of cross-fostered eggs did not affect hatching success or nestling growth rates, and initial nestling size differences between broods with large and small eggs persisted for <1 wk. No effect of mean egg size on mean nestling survival could be detected. Furthermore, a partial... (More)
Reproductive success in relation to egg size was studied in European Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) by swapping whole clutches between nests at the start of the incubation period. Egg size did not reflect parental quality as no measure of reproductive success was correlated with the foster mothers' mean egg size. There was a significant positive relationship between the mean size of the cross-fostered eggs and the subsequent mean size of hatchlings. The mean size of cross-fostered eggs did not affect hatching success or nestling growth rates, and initial nestling size differences between broods with large and small eggs persisted for <1 wk. No effect of mean egg size on mean nestling survival could be detected. Furthermore, a partial cross-fostering experiment, where nestlings were swapped between nests the day after hatching, failed to demonstrate any lasting effect of egg size on nestling size. It is suggested that mean egg size may only influence reproductive success during particularly inferior environmental conditions (Less)
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type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Ecology
volume
76
pages
1 - 7
publisher
Ecological Society of America
external identifiers
  • scopus:0028977025
ISSN
0012-9658
DOI
10.2307/1940626
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
e6ac8a36-2519-489e-825f-fdc138eea699
date added to LUP
2017-07-11 09:29:33
date last changed
2017-08-20 05:13:40
@article{e6ac8a36-2519-489e-825f-fdc138eea699,
  abstract     = {Reproductive success in relation to egg size was studied in European Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) by swapping whole clutches between nests at the start of the incubation period. Egg size did not reflect parental quality as no measure of reproductive success was correlated with the foster mothers' mean egg size. There was a significant positive relationship between the mean size of the cross-fostered eggs and the subsequent mean size of hatchlings. The mean size of cross-fostered eggs did not affect hatching success or nestling growth rates, and initial nestling size differences between broods with large and small eggs persisted for &lt;1 wk. No effect of mean egg size on mean nestling survival could be detected. Furthermore, a partial cross-fostering experiment, where nestlings were swapped between nests the day after hatching, failed to demonstrate any lasting effect of egg size on nestling size. It is suggested that mean egg size may only influence reproductive success during particularly inferior environmental conditions},
  author       = {Smith, Henrik G. and Ohlsson, Thomas and Wettermark, K. J},
  issn         = {0012-9658},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {1--7},
  publisher    = {Ecological Society of America},
  series       = {Ecology},
  title        = {Adaptive significance of egg size in the European Starling: experimental tests},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/1940626},
  volume       = {76},
  year         = {1995},
}