Extrapair paternity, song, and genetic quality in song sparrows
Most songbirds are socially monogamous, yet molecular studies have found that in most species, some offspring in the nest are sired by males other than the social mate of the female. The functional significance of extrapair paternity (EPP) in social monogamy is poorly understood, despite numerous theoretical and empirical studies in the last decades. We have examined EPP in the song sparrow (Melospiza melodia) using microsatellites and tested whether females choose as extrapair mates males that 1) had larger song repertoires, 2) shared more songs with their neighbors, 3) were more heterozygous, or 4) were less related to the females than the social mate of these. We found that 24% of offspring were sired by extrapair males and that the extrapair sires were invariably neighbors. However, neither song repertoire size nor song sharing with neighbors predicted a male's EPP success. Furthermore, neither heterozygosity of a male nor his relatedness to the female predicted EPP success. At the same time, males that did not lose paternity in their own nest or gain paternity in other nests tended to be younger. These results indicate that females are not using song repertoire size or song sharing as a basis for extrapair mate choice and are not likely to accrue significant genetic benefits from EPP. Instead, the occurrence and level of EPP in this population might be primarily governed by behavioral trade-offs between mate guarding and pursuing extrapair copulations. We suggest that detailed behavioral studies are needed to understand extrapair mating in this species. Copyright 2011, Oxford University Press.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 22 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP, UK|
Fax: 01865 267 985
Web page: http://beheco.oxfordjournals.org/
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.oup.co.uk/journals|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:beheco:v:22:y:2011:i:1:p:73-81. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press)or (Christopher F. Baum)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.