Sex and genetics: Why birds are unfaithful to their partners

Matings between relatives have negative consequences for the offspring, a phenomenon known as inbreeding depression. But what if you end up with a related partner? Initiated by a scientist at the Max Planck Research Centre for Ornithology, a study by an international team of scientists showed that social mates that are genetically similar use alternative reproductive behaviors to avoid paying the price of inbreeding. Combining field observations on free-living populations of three shorebirds with molecular methods to determine parentage and relatedness between the partners they found that extra-pair parentage occurred when mates were more closely related (Nature, Oct. 10th, 2002).

Over the past decade, the use of molecular techniques to determine parentage has led to the realization that monogamy is rare in nature. Although most bird species are socially monogamous, broods often contain young that are not related to one of the parents tending the nest. This can be the result of two alternative reproductive behaviors. Extra-pair paternity occurs when females copulate with males other than their social partner, and these copulations lead to fertilizations. Extra-pair paternity is common in songbirds, but much less common in other birds. Quasi-parasitism occurs when a male copulates with another female, who then lays one or more eggs that he fathered in his nest. This is a rare and little understood phenomenon. The reasons why birds are unfaithful to their social partner, with whom they raise the offspring, has been the focus of much debate. A scientist at the Max Planck Research Centre for Ornithology initiated a study on parentage in shorebirds, and in collaboration with researchers at the Konrad Lorenz Institute for Comparative Ethology in Vienna, combined data on three species from three continents. An international team of scientists studied populations of marked individuals in the field and closely monitored their breeding behavior. Based on blood samples

Contact: Dr Bart Kempenaers

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Parasitic cowbirds thrive with a less ruthless strategy than cuckoos
2. A changing landscape may have dire implications for birds
3. Songbirds escaped from Australasia, conquered rest of world
4. Sleepless over Seattle: Migrating songbirds forgo sleep but keep their wits
5. UW study: Migrating birds offer insight into sleep
6. Chemical reaction in birds provides sense of direction during migratory flights
7. Worlds oldest modern hummingbirds described in Science
8. Global warming may cause songbirds to avoid certain foods
9. Wright State biologist studies birds to learn how our stomachs convey thoughts of hunger
10. Snowbirds versus real birds
11. Researchers find new form of hormone that helps songbirds reproduce

Post Your Comments:

(Date:3/27/2021)... ... March 25, 2021 , ... Phlexglobal announced ... Planet Group, has selected Phlexglobal and its innovative regulatory SaaS software, PhlexSubmission, as ... a comprehensive review of five regulatory software companies, with the review team including ...
(Date:3/27/2021)... ... 25, 2021 , ... The 2021 Virtual Conference on Clinical Trial Supply-Europe ... More and more, clinical trial supply conferences are featuring speakers and forums that ... Asymmetrex’s founder and CEO, James L. Sherley, M.D., Ph.D., presented a talk ...
(Date:3/23/2021)... ... March 23, 2021 , ... G-CON Manufacturing (G-CON), the ... by Matica Biotechnology (Matica Bio), a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) specializing ... the cleanroom build out for its new GMP production facility in College Station, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/27/2021)... ... March 24, 2021 , ... ... Life Sciences and Healthcare firms of all sizes, adds depth to its team ... specialist. Pardillo, who earned his doctorate in computational chemistry from Florida International University ...
(Date:3/27/2021)... ... March 24, 2021 , ... ABI Wellness, ... and reporting approach designed under CEO Mark Watson, today announced a webinar dedicated ... featuring guest speakers Dr. Cameron Clark, Neuropsychologist and Founder of Sharp Thinking, and ...
(Date:3/27/2021)... ... ... The Xtalks editorial team is pleased to announce the launch of the ... joined by editorial team members Ayesha Rashid, Sydney Perelmutter and Mira Nabulsi to discuss ... including insights from industry experts. , The Xtalks Life Science podcast will feature ...
(Date:3/23/2021)... Conn. (PRWEB) , ... March 23, 2021 , ... ... develops solutions for characterizing microbiome populations down to the strain level, recently unveiled ... applications. , Not all microbes are created equal: some are easy to ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: