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Studies in Royal Society journals include stress in birds and depletion of medieval fish stocks

Biology Letters

Temperature-dependent sex ratio in a bird by Dr A Gth and Dr DT Booth
Incubation temperature is known to determine sex ratios in reptiles, but not in birds. We show that incubation temperature affects sex ratios in megapode birds, which are exceptional because they use environmental heat sources for incubation. In a megapode species, the Australian brush-turkey (Alectura lathami), more males hatch at low and more females hatch at high incubation temperatures, while the proportion is 1:1 at the average temperature found in natural incubation mounds. Chicks from lower temperatures weigh less, but are not smaller, which affects offspring survival. This is the first report for an incubation temperature dependent sex bias in birds.
Contact: Dr Ann Gth, Psychology, Macquarie University, North Ryde, SYDNEY, 2109, Australia

Community response to enrichment is highly sensitive to model structure by Dr GF Fussmann and Dr B Blasius
Biologists use mathematical expressions to model, understand, and predict nature. Often several mathematical expressions are available to describe biological processes. The uptake of food, for instance, can be described by at least three mathematical functions that are indistinguishable for all practical purposes. If, however, used in a standard predator-prey model these functions may lead to drastically different predictions of the population dynamics in this system. Predictive models should be analyzed and interpreted with great caution whenever the mathematical functions used in them are approximations of biological processes.
Contact: Dr Gregor Fussmann, McGill University, Department of Biology, 1205, ave. Docteur Penfield, Montreal, Quebec, H3A 1B1, Canada

Resistance of flight feathers to mechanical fatigue covaries with moult strategy in two warbler species by Dr TP Weber, Dr J Borgudd, Dr A Hedenstrom, Dr K Persson and Dr G Sandberg
Most bird species re
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Contact: Tim Watson
tim.watson@royalsoc.ac.uk
44-207-451-2508
Royal Society
23-Nov-2004


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